CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - The Virginia defense forced three turnovers, and the Cavaliers defeated Louisville 31-17 on Saturday at Scott Stadium.
Junior linebacker Noah Taylor gave the Wahoos the early lead by returning an interception 85 yards for the first touchdown of his career.
UVA forced two fumbles in the 2nd half, and they also stopped the Cardinals on 4th down twice.
The defensive plays helped slow down Louisville quarterback Malik Cunningham, who rushed for 197 yards, and led his team to 497 yards of total offense.
“Tough game," says head coach Bronco Mendenhall. "Tough victory, and very competitive, and hard fought. I was proud of our team, from beginning to end.”
Senior linebacker Zane Zandier says, “We gave up a decent amount of yards on defense, but we did a good job keeping the points to a minimum, and I think those big plays help, with turnovers and sacks. Any way that we can get the ball back to our offense. When you get plays like that, you’re always going to have a solid outcome.”
Sophomore quarterback Brennan Armstrong says, "It’s a huge momentum swing. The turnover from Noah. The stops they made. The fumbles. It just gives us more opportunities to score.”
“We just kept fighting and battling," says junior receiver Billy Kemp. "You can really say that’s just the nature of this team, honestly. It took us a while to put some decent, good drives together, but we just kept fighting, and it worked out at the end.”
Freshman receiver Lavel Davis Jr. had a team-high four receptions for 74 yards in his return to action.
Armstrong completed 15-of-23 passes for 203 yards and a TD, and also rushed for two touchdowns.
UVA (3-4, 3-4 ACC) will be back at home next Saturday against Abeline Christian.
Kickoff is set for four o’clock.