The Virginia Tech Hokies suffered a crushing upset to the Duke Blue Devils 13-10, marking the first time Duke has ever won in Lane Stadium.
Logan Thomas threw a career-high four interceptions, as Tech’s offense managed to fall apart at all the worst possible times.
“I don’t think we played a Virginia Tech football game tonight,” said head coach Frank Beamer. “But Duke has some very good players and they’re extremely well-coached.”
The defense managed to hold the Blue Devils to just 198 yards and picked off quarterback Anthony Boone four times, but it wasn’t enough.
Kendall Fuller grabbed three of those interceptions, the first time a Hokie player has accomplished that feat since Jayron Hosely picked off North Carolina State’s Russell Wilson three times in 2010. His brother, Kyle, dressed for the game, but didn’t see the field thanks to a groin injury, so it was on the other Fuller to step up.
“It was just playing more on the boundary side,” Fuller said. “I feel like the defense still gave up a couple plays that we could’ve stopped.”
While the defense might’ve been lacking, it was the offense that was truly disappointing.
The Hokies piled up 332 yards, but just couldn’t score with consistency. Drives regularly stalled in Duke territory.
“Obviously, it’s frustrating,” Thomas said “We were able to do a lot of what we wanted to do. We established the running game early, we’ve just got to execute.”
Unlike the team’s last three games, the rushing attack was the only facet of the offense that was working. Thomas led the team with 101 yards on the ground, while running back Trey Edmunds had 44.
“We improved in running, but with turnovers it’s tough to win games,” said offensive coordinator Scot Loeffler.
Neither team could find any offensive success in the first half, as the squads combined for just 332 yards.
The difference was Duke kicker Ross Martin, who hit a pair of 50-yard field goals to give the Blue Devils a 6-0 lead going into halftime.
Duke took command at the start of the third, when Anthony Boone ran for a nine-yard touchdown. Boone ran for 31 yards on the drive to help give the Devils a 13-0 lead.
“I give Duke a lot of credit,” Beamer said. “They came in here and played very well.”
Later in the third, Duke downed the ball on the one-yard line in a controversial call, and many started to write the Hokies off.
But Thomas fired off a 56-yard bomb to receiver Demitri Knowles to reenergize the offense.
“I thought the tide had turned after that play,” Knowles said.
After Thomas ran the ball in for a five yard score, most Hokie fans seemed to feel the same, as Lane Stadium erupted.
Tech drove for a 42-yard Cody Journell field goal to cut the lead to 13-10 early in the fourth quarter, but the Hokies would get no closer.