ATLANTA (HokiesSports.com) – Virginia Tech jumped all over Georgia Tech from the opening kick, scoring touchdowns on four of its first six possessions and rolling to a 45-0 victory over the Yellow Jackets in an ACC game played Saturday afternoon at Bobby Dodd Stadium.
Hendon Hooker rushed for two touchdowns and threw a touchdown pass for the Hokies, who won for the fifth time in their past six games. The victory moved them to 7-3 overall on the season, 4-2 in league play. The Yellow Jackets fell to 2-8 overall, 1-6 in the ACC.
Most importantly, with the win, Virginia Tech became bowl eligible for the 27th consecutive season.
The Hokies jumped on the Yellow Jackets quickly, scoring on back-to-back possessions in the first quarter. A 71-yard drive – aided by a 49-yard run by Tayvion Robinson on a reverse – ended with a 3-yard touchdown run by Hooker that gave the Hokies a 7-0 lead eight minutes into the game.
On its next possession, Tech went 77 yards in seven plays, getting a 37-yard pass play from Hooker to Tré Turner to get into Georgia Tech territory. The drive ended five plays later when Keshawn King scored on a 2-yard run that pushed the Tech lead to 14-0 with 2:49 remaining in the first quarter.
Those two scores marked the start of a dominating performance by the Hokies. Hooker scored a second touchdown on a 5-yard run in the second quarter, and Caleb Farley intercepted Georgia Tech’s James Graham and returned the ball 17 yards for a touchdown giving the Hokies a 28-0 lead with 5:52 left in the first half.
Brian Johnson’s 22-yard field goal with 1:11 remaining in the half gave Virginia Tech a 31-0 bulge at the break.
The Hokies finished with 299 yards in the first half – and mercifully took a knee on their final possession of the half, or the yardage total would have been more. The Yellow Jackets had just one first down and 48 yards of offense.
Hooker threw a touchdown pass to James Mitchell early in the third quarter to push the lead to 38-0, and after that score, Virginia Tech’s coaching staff started playing backups.
Virginia Tech’s defense held Georgia Tech to just 134 yards of offense. The Hokies intercepted two passes and recorded four sacks in handing defensive coordinator Bud Foster his 35th shutout during his 33 seasons in Blacksburg.
The Hokies finished with 461 yards of offense. Hooker completed 9 of 13 for 159 yards and he rushed for 10 yards. Mitchell hauled in four passes for 90 yards and the score.
• Hooker’s two touchdown runs marked the third and fourth of the season and the fourth and fifth of his career.
• Tré Turner had a 39-yard run and a 37-yard reception. He now has 22 plays of 20 yards or more in his career (20 games).
• Mitchell’s 7-yard touchdown reception in the third quarter marked his second of the season and the second of his career. He now has five touchdowns on the season (three rushing, two receiving).
• Robinson’s 49-yard run in the first quarter was a career long.
• King’s first-quarter touchdown run marked his second of the season and the first since he scored on a 4-yard run in the first quarter of the Hokies’ 31-17 victory over ODU on Sept. 7.
• Farley’s interception was his fourth of the season and the sixth of his career.
• Farley’s interception return for a touchdown marked the third interception return for a touchdown in Fuente’s tenure.
• Dax Hollifield intercepted a pass in the third quarter and now has intercepted a pass in three consecutive games.
The Hokies take on Pittsburgh on Saturday in a game that marks Senior Day at Lane Stadium. Tech has lost seven the past 10 meetings with the Panthers, including last fall’s 52-22 defeat in Pittsburgh. The game’s kickoff time will be announced Sunday.