BLACKSBURG, Va. (VT Athletics) -- Miami scored 28 unanswered points midway through the game, and the 'Canes went on to a 38-14 victory over Virginia Tech in an ACC game played Saturday at Lane Stadium.
With the loss, the Hokies fell to 4-6 overall, 3-4 in ACC play. Miami became bowl eligible with its sixth win, moving to 6-5, 3-4 in the ACC.
The Hokies took a 14-10 lead in the second quarter when receiver Tre Turner scored on a 20-yard jet sweep with 10:06 remaining in the first half. But the wheels fell off after that, as Miami scored on a 1-yard run by quarterback N'Kosi Perry with 33 seconds left in the half to retake the lead, 17-14.
That touchdown marked the first of four unanswered scores for the 'Canes. Miami scored three touchdowns in the third quarter, including two on their final two possessions of the period. Jeff Thomas returned a punt 51 yards for a touchdown, and Cam'Ron Davis scored on a 16-yard pass from Perry.
The Hokies' only other score in the game came on a 15-yard touchdown pass from Ryan Willis to tight end Dalton Keene on Tech's first possession of the game. Willis completed just 18 of 36 passes for 216 yards, with a touchdown and two interceptions, to lead a Tech offense that amassed 335 yards.
Perry threw for 171 yards and two touchdowns for Miami, which finished with 339 yards.
• Keene's touchdown reception marked his third of the season and the third of his career. The sophomore has caught 18 passes this season after catching just 10 a year ago.
• Turner's rushing touchdown marked his first rushing attempt of his career.
• Willis now has thrown 17 touchdown passes, with just five interceptions on the season.
• Rayshard Ashby led the Hokies with 14 tackles, including one for a loss, in his return from an injury. The sophomore linebacker leads the Hokies with 77 tackles this season, including 38 solo.
QUOTES TO NOTE
Virginia Tech head coach Justin Fuente
(On being frustrated at not being able to win at home)
"No, on frustration. I refuse to use that word, but I know what you're getting at. We want to do well in front of our fans. I want the kids to have success. That's what drives us every day – to push the kids to do their best in all areas of their lives. An element of that is doing it in front of the people who appreciate the work that our kids put in – and that's the fans that show up. I'm sure they're upset. They're not more upset than I am. I promise you that. We're working every single day to continue to improve, and I know we are. I've never been more confident in the future of this football program than I am right at this moment, but that doesn't make anybody feel better tonight. But we want to do well – absolutely, 100 percent right here, and continue the tradition of playing great football here and rewarding the passion of the people that spend their hard-earned money to support our kids. Absolutely."
Virginia Tech defensive coordinator Bud Foster
(Is this as challenging as it has been?)
"You know, it's been an interesting year to say the least. That's what coaching is all about. It's not every year where we're going to win 10 or 11 games like we've won, unfortunately. Did I foresee it being this type of year going into the season? No … there were some guys that we weren't expecting to lose that were playmakers for us and game changers for us. But that's part of coaching and developing young men. The key to it is these young man understanding that you've got really quality coaches. It's proven in their track records – that if they trust the process, buy into the process, trust their training, come out to work every day and work with a purpose, then good things are going to come. That's what this group is buying into and that's going to come as we move forward."
(Does coaching from the booth offer a different perspective?)
"That was a little different today. I don't know how long it's been. I've never called a game. This is the first time I've called a game from the booth. I think the last time I was in there was '92 or '91 or '90 … I can't remember. That's a lot of fourth quarters ago. It's been a long time ago. I know somebody's going to ask, 'What's up?' I was under the weather early in the week, and the docs recommended that I go to the box just for safety purposes. I might get up there and go again. Who knows?"
The Hokies take on in-state rival Virginia next Friday at Lane Stadium. The game is slated to kick off at 3:30 and can be seen on ABC.