#8 North Carolina scores early, often, otherwise, defeats #19 Virginia Tech, 56-45
Virginia Tech rallied twice from big deficits to make it interesting, but #8 North Carolina just had too much for the #19 Hokies, rolling up 656 total yards in a 56-45 win on Saturday in Chapel Hill.
The Tar Heels (3-0) jumped out to a 21-0 first-quarter lead, on a pair of Javonte Williams rushing TDs and a Sam Howell TD pass.
Virginia Tech (2-1) got back to 21-14 midway through the second on TD runs from James Mitchell and Khalil Herbert, but UNC was able to push the margin back to three scores – on a Dazz Newsome 6-yard run and a 43-yard TD pass from Howell to Dyami Brown with 16 seconds left in the half.
The Hokies would trail 42-17 after a 16-yard TD run by Michael Carter with 7:14 to go in the third, but stormed back with three scoring drives – capped by a Hendon Hooker 5-yard TD run, a Herbert 52-yard rumble, and a Hooker-to-Tayvion Robinson 33-yard TD strike that made it 42-37 at the end of three.
A Howell-to-Newsome 12-yard pass with 12:37 left made it 49-37, and a 62-yard scoring run from Carter with 8:49 to go put the game out of reach.
Hooker threw for 136 yards and two TDs for the Hokies, who got 138 yards and two TDs on the ground from Herbert, as the Tech offense gained 495 yards on the day.
The story of this one was the Carolina ground game, which piled on 399 yards – 214 from Carter, 169 yards from Williams.
Howell was 18-of-23 passing for 257 yards and three TDs.
Story by Chris Graham