Pat Robinson III hit a driving layup with 3 seconds left to give the College of Charleston a 77-75 victory over Virginia Tech Sunday on its home floor in the championship game of the Charleston (S.C.) Classic.
Charleston (5-1) was down by eight points with eight minutes to go. But Robinson and Ante Brzovic owned the rest of the game. Robinson scored eight of his 14 points in the final five minutes, all with determined drives to the hoop.
Brzovic tallied 11 of his team-high 15 points in the final eight minutes, making a trio of 3-pointers after entering the game with four treys this year.
It was the first time in four tries that Charleston won the title. Virginia Tech (5-1) was gunning for its second Charleston title in as many tries after capturing the championship in 2018.
In a see-saw battle, Virginia Tech rallied from a 13-point deficit in the first half to take a 63-56 lead with eight minutes to go before Charleston shot its way back into the game. Brzovic triggered the final run with 3-pointers on back-to-back possessions.
The Hokies' Sean Pedulla scored 11 of his 17 points in the final 10 minutes. In the final 1:04, Hunter Cattoor (17 points) made a 3-pointer and a layup. Both shots tied the game before Robertson made his game-winner.
Justyn Mutts had 16 points and nine rebounds for Virginia Tech. Grant Basile added 12 points and five rebounds. Darius Maddox, who finished with eight points, had a chance to win it at the buzzer but his shot from half-court caromed off the rim.
Charleston took command in the first half with an 11-point run, which was boosted by a technical foul called on Hokies coach Mike Young. Dalton Bolon made the two awarded free throws and Reyne Smith (10 points) followed with a 3-pointer.
The spree gave Charleston its biggest lead of the half, 25-12, before Cattoor ended the Hokies' drought with a 3-pointer. Later in the half, the Hokies scored nine straight points, with Basile starting the spurt with a 3-pointer and finishing it with a layup.
Charleston hit 50.8 percent of its shots while Tech made 50 percent. The Cougars were better from distance, however, making 8 of 23 (34.8 percent) while the Hokies connected on 6 of 27 (22.2 percent).
--Field Level Media