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Virginia closes 2020 season with a lackluster loss at Virginia Tech

Burn the footage.

Boston College v Virginia Photo by Ryan M. Kelly/Getty Images

There isn’t much to say on this one. Virginia’s long drought in Blacksburg continued as the Hokies dominated en route to a 33-15 win. Virginia Tech rattled off scoring plays of 76 and 60 yards in the first half, effectively putting the game out of reach. With the loss, the Commonwealth Cup sadly has to go back to Blacksburg.

Virginia’s injuries and opt outs on defense were highlighted as VT amassed 464 yards on offense, including 162 yards rushing from RB Khalil Herbert. The Hokies converted 9-of-16 third downs in the game and held the ball for over 35 minutes.

Brennan Armstrong struggled for the Hoos, going 25-for-46 with 259 yards, two TDs, and two interceptions. Keytaon Thompson and Tony Poljan scored touchdowns for the Hoos in the loss.

The Hokies opened scoring with a 46-yard field goal, but the Cavaliers responded with a 14-play, 75-yard drive that culminated with a touchdown reception by Thompson. Virginia looked comfortable and competent as they marched down the field, led by Armstrong and Kemp.

Virginia had a huge opportunity after VT took a 10-7 lead in the second quarter as the Hokie return man muffed the ball and Hunter Stewart recovered at the VT 24-yard line. The offense couldn’t pick up a first down, and Brian Delaney’s 39-yard field goal attempt was (questionably) ruled wide left.

VT scored the final 24 points of the half to take a 27-7 lead into the break.

Things did not improve in the second half. Virginia threatened to make things interesting after Tony Poljan scored a touchdown and a 2-point conversion cut Tech’s lead to 15, but Armstrong threw the ball directly to a VT defender to end their next drive.

Tech pushed the lead to 33-15 with a field goal on the short field, and that was about it. Virginia outscored VT 8-6 in a lifeless second half, but it wasn’t nearly enough.

Unfortunately, this loss likely ended the season for the Hoos as Virginia might follow in the steps of Boston College and Pitt and decline a bowl game as the coronavirus pandemic continues. The Cavaliers did not have any major COVID outbreaks within the team and did not have to cancel or move any games as a result of issues inside the program.

Virginia will finish the regular season 5-5, its third straight season at .500 or better.