CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Brennan Armstrong passed for 383 yards and four touchdowns, and the Virginia football team crushed Abilene Christian 55-15 on Saturday night at Scott Stadium.
The yards and touchdowns both represent career-highs for the sophomore, who had never passed for more than three-hundred yards in a game, and the totals were accomplished in less than three quarters of action.
Armstrong is the first player in program history with three 50-yard passes in a game, and they all came on touchdowns (90, 56 and 52 yards).
The 90-yard TD pass to Lavel Davis Jr. on the final play of the 1st quarter is tied for the fifth-longest pass play in program history, and it’s the second-longest reception by a true freshman.
Virginia had eight players make their college debut on Saturday: true freshman DL Olasunkonmi Agunloye, OLB Dre Bryant, true freshman OLB Jonathan Horton, true freshman OG Jestus Johnson III, OG Jack Keenan, S Darren Klein, OLB D’Sean Perry, and TE Sackett Wood Jr.
Head coach Bronco Mendenhall says, “To be able to get so many of those guys in the game, that was the best part of the game, for me. Seeing so many smiles, and smiles from so many different players, that I hadn’t seen, out there playing.”
Senior offensive lineman Chris Glaser says, “Seeing those guys play, and really just put their heart into it, going into this game, and when it was their turn, we told them, ‘Just play how you play in practice, you’re good enough.’ They stepped up to the plate, and did really good, and I’m proud to see them play well.”
D’Sean Perry returned an interception 84-yards for a touchdown on the final play of the game.
“Honestly, it felt surreal,” says Perry. “When I caught the ball, it didn’t feel real, honestly, but I tucked the ball in, and ran the score in. It was a surreal moment, and I prepared for it for a long time. I’m just super grateful.”
Sophomore linebacker Nick Jackson adds, “It’s awesome. It’s awesome to see those guys out there. I mean, they work their butts off every single day in practice. For them to be able to get the opportunity, like D’Sean Perry today, that was awesome. It doesn’t get much better than that.”
Elijah Gaines notched his first career sack in the fourth quarter, and Demick Starling caught his first touchdown on a 2-yard pass from Lindell Stone.
The Cavaliers had 518-yards of total offense against the Wildcats.
Virginia (4-4, 3-4 ACC) returns to action next Saturday at Florida State.