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Allen stays involved in second half vs. Miami

Jeff Allen disappeared in the second half of Virginia Tech's loss at North Carolina on Sunday. He reappeared on Wednesday night and played a complete game.

In the Hokies' 81-66 upset of No. 23 Miami, Allen recorded his fifth double-double of the season, scoring 14 points on 5-of-9 shooting and adding 10 rebounds in 26 minutes. The key was keeping Allen involved early and often in the second half, when he scored nine of his points on 3-of-5 shooting.

"Sometimes it’s just like that when you’re not in the flow of the game that much; your head kind of wanders off," guard Malcolm Delaney said. "But we know Jeff is one of the best big men in the league and we’ve got to give him the ball more."

Although Allen is one of Virginia Tech's most talented players, he has not played consistently and has seemed to lack focus at times throughout his career.

On Wednesday, Delaney made a concerted effort to feed Allen on the inside. Allen scored the Hokies' first seven points after halftime, with a dunk, a layup and three successful free throws.

"It’s good to see Jeff finish with a double-double," Hokies Coach Seth Greenberg said on Wednesday night. "We’ve got to keep Jeff engaged; There’s no doubt about that.”

Against the Tar Heels, Allen scored four points, grabbed seven rebounds and recorded three steals in the first half, but his final stat line looked exactly the same as it did at halftime. He scored zero points, grabbed zero rebounds and recorded zero steals in the second half in Chapel Hill.

"I kind of dragged in the second half, kind of lost my enthusiasm," Allen said of his performance at North Carolina. "But this game I just kept it the whole game through. Instead of just playing one half, I played two.”

By Mark Viera  |  January 14, 2010; 12:51 PM ET
 
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