Hokies fall to Christion Jones and the Crimson Tide
None the less, it was Hokies’ defense against the Alabama Crimson Tide offense in the first game of the season. Although Virginia Tech’s defense had their fair share of broken up passes and loss of yards, Alabama’s offense didn’t help the matter much either, A.J. McCarron and crew dominated every part of the field.
Despite how good the VA Tech defense played, the Hokies couldn’t hold off the defending BCS champions in the long run. To start off, the Hokie’s first play was a run that resulted in no gain and it continued to an attempted pitch that lost them 4 yards. The misery still went on though… only 1:09 into the game and the first time Alabama touched the ball, they ran it back for a 74 yard touchdown by Christion Jones. On only their second drive of the game A.J. McCarron powered Alabama down the field for a 2 yard rush by T.J. Yeldon that placed Alabama 14-0 over the Hokies with 1:53 left in the 1st. But with 1:37 left in the quarter, VA Tech prevailed. Trey Edmunds rushed the middle for 77 yards and a touchdown, making it 14-7 and giving light to the Hokies. At the end of the 1st, McCarron was 5/8 for 55 yards and Thomas racked up 34 yards with only 2/7 completion. Edmunds with 83 rushing yards after one.
The 2nd quarter started off all kinds of bad. VA Tech’s Thomas threw an all so familiar interception that led to a 38 yard touchdown for Sunseri of Alabama. 21-7 only 56 seconds into the 2nd quarter. A very strong quarter for Tech’s defense though. They held Alabama to only short runs and even had a defensive interception by Kyle Fuller (Senior) at 7:07 in the 2nd. Fuller’s interception allowed the Hokie’s to add 3 more making it 21-10. No matter how good they were, nothing was able to hold back Christion Jones who struck again with a 93 yard kick return making it 28-20 with 3:35 left. An uneventful last 3 minutes brought them to halftime with the Hokies trailing by 8.
Coming into the 3rd with some energy and only down by 8 to the defending back-to-back BCS Champs, Virginia Tech held McCarron on Alabama’s first drive of the second half. Edmunds continued to dominate, rushing over 100 yards in his first career game and the Hokies still managed their tremendous defense. Thomas still struggled, getting sacked for a loss of 3 at 10:52 in the 3rd and miscalculated passes, he looked like a deer in headlights against the Crimson Tide. It wasn’t until late in the quarter though that a 38 yard bomb from McCarron to once again, Chrisition Jones, put Alabama up 35-10 and Jones recorded his 3 touchdown of the night (first one receiving.) 35-10 the score after three.
The 4th quarter is everything as expected, Alabama is up by 25 and they start to put second string players in. Tech’s defense is doing all they can do to keep plays at a minimum but McCarron is throwing the ball too much to handle. With 4:18 left in the game, back up QB Mark Leal (Junior) comes in to replace Logan Thomas. With an overall boring quarter and plenty of dropped passes on both ends, the Alabama Crimson Tide knocks off the Virginia Tech Hokies with a 35-10 victory.
Although it was a 21+ point blowout as expected, Alabama wasn’t playing typical “Alabama football” and it was their special teams that ultimately won them the game. If it wasn’t for the tremendous efforts by the Virginia Tech defense, this game would have been a far bigger blowout than it already was. With the first game completed and an 0-1 start to the season, the Hokies need to put this behind them and prepare for their next game at home against Western Carolina on September 7th.
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