UVA drops OT heartbreaker at Georgia Tech, 30-27

uva georgia techUVA placekicker Brian Delaney snap-hooked a 35-yard field-goal try in OT, and Georgia Tech held on for a 30-27 win over the ‘Hoos on Saturday night in Atlanta.

Virginia (7-4, 4-3 ACC) led 21-16 at the half, but was undone a bit by its own sloppiness on special teams. Punt returner Tavares Kelly called for a fair catch on a first-quarter punt, but let the ball hit at the 10, and Georgia Tech downed the ball at the UVA 1.

On second down, quarterback Bryce Perkins was sacked for a safety, and briefly left the game with what at first looked to be a serious injury, but he would return.

After the safety, Georgia Tech returned the free kick for a touchdown, Juanyeh Thomas going 77 yards for the score, before the Yellow Jackets (7-4, 5-3 ACC) added the first of two two-point conversions, to make it 13-7 Georgia Tech at that stage.

True freshman backup quarterback Brennan Armstrong only played on one drive in relief of Perkins, but he made the most of it, converting a third-and-long with a scramble, then hooking up with Joe Reed on a 56-yard catch-and-run TD pass on another third down to put Virginia back on top.

After a Wesley Wells field goal, Virginia would go up 21-16 into the halftime break after Perkins scored on a 9-yard run.

The third quarter was a stalemate, but the Jackets got the big break after a three-and-out by its offense, on another punt.

A short kick hit upman Darrius Bratton at the UVA 41, and Georgia Tech recovered and eventually punched in the gift on a 3-yard Jerry Howard TD run that, with a Clinton Lynch two-point conversion, put the Yellow Jackets up 24-21 with 12:30 left.

Delaney connected on a 30-yard field-goal attempt with 4:31 left to tie the game at 24. Georgia Tech took the lead back with 1:04 to go on a career-long 48-yard kick by Wells.

Perkins then led Virginia to the Georgia Tech 15 before the ‘Hoos had to settle for a 32-yard field goal by Delaney that sent the game to OT tied at 27.

UVA won the toss and opted to play defense first, and got a three-and-out, forcing a 40-yard try by Wells that hit the inside of the right upright before trickling through.

The Cavaliers came up short on its OT possession, necessitating the 35-yard try by Delaney, whose timing appeared to be off because the left side of the Georgia Tech rush was motioning to the game officials to call a false start on Virginia ahead of the snap.

Virginia outgained Georgia Tech 403-305, holding the Yellow Jackets to 268 yards on the ground, nearly 100 below their NCAA-best season average.

Perkins was 21-for-26 passing for 217 yards and a touchdown, and ran for 73 yards on 16 attempts with a touchdown on the ground.

Olamide Zaccheus had 111 yards on 11 catches for UVA, which finishes the 2018 regular season next week at Virginia Tech.

Story by Chris Graham

         
 

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