UVA’s record-setting offense comes up short in 2nd half of Commonwealth Clash

UVA quarterback Brennan Armstrong walks off the field following an incomplete pass on 4th down.
UVA quarterback Brennan Armstrong walks off the field following an incomplete pass on 4th down.(wvir)
Published: Nov. 28, 2021 at 5:36 PM EST
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - The Virginia Tech football team was celebrating with the Commonwealth Cup on Saturday night, as the Hokies defeated UVA 29-24 at Scott Stadium.

Tech won the Cup for the 17th time in the last eighteen seasons thanks to a strong defense and a dominating rushing attack.

Virginia Tech had its biggest rushing output of the year on Saturday night, as Hokies ran for a season-high 320-yards on 46-carries.

Raheem Blackshear led the way with 146 yards and a touchdown, while quarterback Braxton Burmeister rushed for 115 yards.

The ground attack helped keep the ball away from Virginia’s high-scoring offense.

The Cavaliers scored 21-points in the first half against the Hokies, but were held to just three in the 2nd.

“I don’t think they did anything different,” says UVA QB Brennan Armstrong. “Maybe a little bit more (Man-to-Man). They were running a lot of zone, we were eating them up in the zone. They started going a little bit more Man, and they were playing plays, in Man coverage.”

Head coach Bronco Mendenhall adds, “Clearly wasn’t the same as the first half, where it was pretty much moving the ball at will. To have three points in the second half, is not enough to win.”

Brennan Armstrong twisted his ankle in the third quarter, but still passed for 400-yards in the game.

He hit the 400-yard mark for the sixth time this season.

Armstrong has thrown for a school-record 4,449 yards this year, which is the fourth-highest total in the history of the ACC.

“I’m proud of the offense,” says Armstrong. “From my COVID year to this year, shoot, we were soaring. Right now, there’s a sour taste with the game. Those numbers, they are what they are, and I don’t think about them right now.”

Mendenhall adds, “I think Brennan had a remarkable season. We’re looking to win one more game, that being a bowl game, which we always expect to go to. Whether that’s squandered or not, I’m not sure I would put it in that category.”

Virginia finished the regular season with four-straight losses, after starting 6-2.

The ‘Hoos and Hokies will both learn their bowl destinations next weekend.

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