Perkins led Cavaliers over Hokies to end 15-year drought

Noah Taylor #14 of the Virginia Cavaliers

Virginia emerged victorious, 39-30, after continuing on three separate occasions in a wild second half. It was Virginia's first Coastal division title.

After a hard 2-10 start in 2016, Mendenhall's teams have gone 23-15 (17-8 the last two seasons with two more games to play), and three consecutive bowl games, not to mention Virginia's first ACC Coastal Division crown.

The Cavaliers (8-3, 5-2 ACC) have not defeated the Hokies (8-3, 5-2 ACC) since 2003.

In 2007, Virginia Tech won 33-21 in a season where both teams were nationally ranked - the No. 8 Hokies beat No. 16 Virginia.

Virginia Tech leads the all-time series 58-37-5, and enters this year's game as the 2.5-point favorite.

The reason why the streak was 15 years long instead of 14 was because of Bryce Perkins' fumble in overtime in 2018. However, the Hokies won 34-31. The Cavaliers converted that turnover into Delaney's 48-yard field goal to take a 33-30 lead.

Brian Delaney's game did not get off to a great start as he missed the extra point on Virginia's first touchdown drive. He also ran for 164 yards with 137 of those coming in the opening quarter.

"I think Virginia Tech's brand has become stronger this year as they played, and their identity has become clearer of how their offense, defense and special teams fit together", said Virginia coach Bronco Mendenhall, who has identified beating Virginia Tech as a top priority since his arrival four years ago.

Tech seemed to seize control for good in the third quarter, scoring touchdowns on each of its three drives while gaining 224 yards total offense, in turning that halftime deficit into a 27-20 lead going into the fourth quarter.

Later in the fourth, Perkins had a 67-yard touchdown run.

Virginia is hoping the third time is the charm they face No. 23 Virginia Tech. The Hokies' Hezekiah Grimsley recovered a fumble in the end zone to tie the game with 1:51 to play.

UVA knotted the score at 27-27 on a 2-yard TD run by Wayne Taulapapa with 13:30 to go.

With Perkins at the controls, Virginia moved the ball just far enough to get into range for kicker Brian Delaney. One field goal was for 25-yards, while the other was for 48-yards. While Perkins is more unsafe when he tucks the ball to run, Hooker has also had success running and similar success would free things up for their other offensive weapons. McClease also scored on a one-yard rushing touchdown. Tre Turner groped in the first quarter fighting for extra yards near the center of the field and Hooker threw an interception that featured a failed Hail Mary when time expired in the second quarter.



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