UVA Can’t Keep Up With Virginia Tech in 33-15 Loss

A back and forth game in the first quarter went awry in the second quarter, and the Virginia Cavaliers couldn’t recover from a 20 point deficit at halftime as the Virginia Tech Hokies took home the victory, 33-15, in the Commonwealth Clash.

On the first drive of the game for the Hokies, running back Khalil Herbert broke away for a 39 yard run. Herbert has been an offensive leader for Virginia Tech all season, and finished with an impressive 162 total yards on the night. Brian Johnson capped the drive with a 46 yard field goal to put the Hokies up 3-0. UVA immediately responded with a nice drive of their own, ending in a Brennan Armstrong 11 yard touchdown pass to Keytaon Thompson to take the lead 7-3. The first quarter featured a lot of third down conversions, with the Hoos going 3-3 and the Hokies going 4-5, and the score remained 7-3. 

In the second quarter, Virginia Tech’s Tre Turner converted a short touchdown run, and this was the beginning of a stretch of 24 unanswered points for the Hokies in the second quarter. A fumble by James Mitchell gave UVA the ball deep in Hokie territory, but the Hoos went three and out and Brian Delaney missed the 39 yard field goal.

James Mitchell bounced back from the fumbled punt to catch a 38 yard pass from quarterback Braxton Burmeister, and Brian Johnson added another long field goal to make it 13-7. The UVA defense gave up several more big plays including a 76 yard touchdown run by Khalil Herbert to make it 20-7, and then a 60 yard catch by Tayvion Robinson to push the score to 27-7 after a missed tackle. The score was 27-7 as the teams headed to the locker room.

In the second half, an impressive catch by Tech receiver James Mitchell set up a 47 yard field goal and extended the lead to 30-7. UVA finally put together a nice drive with 7 plays for 57 yards ending with a 23 yard pass from Brennan Armstrong to Tony Poljan, and then the Hoos added the two point conversion to Terell Jana to end the 27-0 scoring run and make the score 30-15.

After forcing Virginia Tech to punt late in the third quarter, it seemed like the Hoos could mount a comeback, down by just two scores with an entire quarter ahead of them. However, Brennan Armstrong threw an interception to Dorian Strong who returned it for 27 yards, and then Brian Johnson made his 4th field goal of the night to push the score to 33-15. 

From there, Virginia Tech continued to run the football and the clock. Since the UVA defense struggled to stop the run all game, this made it easy for the Hokies to use up time. A second interception by Tech’s Divine Deablo sealed the game, and the final score was 33-15.

Brennan Armstrong was constantly under pressure for UVA, and was sacked four times. The quarterback generally dominates the run game, but he had 15 carries for just 23 yards. UVA’s offense struggled to gain yards, especially on the ground with only 55 total rushing yards. Meanwhile, the Virginia Tech offense amassed 252 rushing yards and 2 touchdowns, and that was the biggest difference in the game that allowed the Commonwealth Cup to travel to Blacksburg.

This is UVA’s final regular season game, and the bowl schedule is to be determined, so we will see if Bronco Mendenhall and the Hoos will be back on the field this season.


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