BLACKSBURG, Va. - The Virginia Tech Hokies kept their hopes for an outright ACC championship alive with a 24-10 victory over in-state rival UVa on Nov. 27 at Lane Stadium. Tech's defense dominated for most of the game and the offense finally showed up in the second half as the Hokies improved to 9-2 and 6-1 in front of 65,115 fans. The Cavaliers fell to 8-3 and 5-3 with the loss.
After playing to a scoreless tie in the first half, UVa finally broke through by taking advantage of a Tech mistake. The Tech defense held the Hoos to three-and-out on their first possession of the second half, but Eddie Royal fumbled the ensuing punt, giving UVa possession at the Tech 31. Three plays later on third-and-11, Marques Hagans found tailback Alvin Pearman in the end zone for a 32-yard touchdown.
The Hokies answered, helped by two 15-yard penalties against UVa. The Hokies drove to the red zone but stalled at the 14 and settled for a 31-yard Brandon Pace field goal with 7:20 remaining in the third quarter.
After holding UVa to three-and-out on its next possession, the Hokies took advantage of a 27-yard punt and started at the UVa 45. On the first play, quarterback Bryan Randall found freshman Josh Hyman streaking down the left sideline and hit him in stride for the 45-yard touchdown. Pace's extra point gave the Hokies a 10-7 lead with 5:41 left in the third quarter.
UVa responded with its best drive of the day, though. Taking the ball at its 20 after a touchback, the Cavaliers ran 17 plays and ate up 7:38 off the clock. After a pass interference penalty on Tech gave UVa first-and-goal at the 1, the Hokie defense stiffened and held the Hoos to a game-tying field goal.
The Hokies went ahead for good on their next possession. Tech drove to the UVa 32, and on first down, Randall hooked up with Hyman again, this time for a 32-yard score where Hyman adjusted to the underthrown ball and then fought off the safety to the end zone.
UVa punted on its next possession, and seven plays later, Tech's Cedric Humes broke through for a 37-yard touchdown run. Pace's extra point made the score 24-10 with 5:08 remaining. On UVa's ensuing possession, Hagans fumbled and the Hokies were able to run out the clock.
The Cavaliers had much better chances to score in the first half but were rebuffed twice. Tech's Jim Davis blocked Connor Hughes' 45-yard field goal attempt on UVa's first possession of the game. Later in the first quarter, the Hoos had first-and-goal at the Tech 4, but running back Wali Lundy fumbled a handoff and Tech's Jonathan Lewis recovered.
Randall finished with an even 200 yards passing, completing 16-of-22 passes. He also became Tech's all time leading passer with a 12-yard completion to tight end Jeff King in the fourth quarter, passing Don Strock. Randall now has 6,061 passing yards in his career.
Humes ran for 95 yards on 15 carries and the one score. Hyman caught four passes for 93 yards and two touchdowns.
The Hokies now have a chance to win the ACC outright, but must overcome Miami at the Orange Bowl next Saturday to achieve that honor. The game is slated for a 1 p.m. kickoff and will be televised on ABC.