On Thursday night, the Virginia Tech Hokies made a major comeback against the Arkansas Razorbacks in the Belk Bowl in North Carolina. The 24th bowl game for Virginia Tech was a game deficit Hokie Nation has seen before, but one they fortunately pulled out from.
The Hokies were getting blown out in the first half and then suddenly after halftime, the defense showed up which sparked magic on the field for Virginia Tech to go 35 unanswered with six sacks and four turnovers; a completely different team than in the first half.
In case you missed the game, the biggest plays by quarter are listed below. Go Hokies!
- Arkansas’ Cole Hedlund kicked a 38-yard field goal, which gave the Razorbacks the official lead within the first two minutes of the game. 3-0 Arkansas.
- Arkansas quarterback Austin Allen passed for 83 yards over four plays where the offense fought for every inch to lead them into redzone. Following, Allen capped off the drive with a one-yard touchdown rush further their lead with 2:22 remaining in the first quarter. 10-0 Arkansas.
- Virginia Tech’s Henri Murphy returned for 47 yards by dashing through two gaps and dragging a defender into the Razorbacks’ territory.
- Evans throws the ball way up as if it was floating across the field right into the hands of defender Ryan Pulley who returned for 50 yards and given an additional 15 yards for unnecessary roughness by Virginia Tech. The turnover became costly when Allen passed for 28 yards to a wide-open Cheyenne O’Grady who breezed into the end zone. 17-0 Arkansas.
- Arkansas’ Keon Hatcher caught the 12-yard pass from Allen on the edge of the right corner of the end zone as he was falling out of bounds. The refs initially ruled that the ball was on the half-yard line but then they overturned it for a touchdown. 24-0 Arkansas.
- Evans tried to get momentum going when he cut left and shot the gap for a 33-yard gain but nothing came of that drive.
- Arkansas kicked off to Virginia Tech for one of the last drives before the half. Hokies’ Cam Phillips tried to catch the ball as it bounced out of his hands and Razorbacks’ Henre Toliver rolled over the ball where Virginia Tech’s Adonis Alexander picked up the ball. After extreme discussion between referrers following the potential fumble, the refs announced that Virginia Tech had a personal foul penalty for 10 yards, which would apply. The Arkansas coach then came out on the field for an over five-minute discussion with five other refs. They then announced that it was Arkansas’ ball and the penalty was declined.
- Beginning the second half, Virginia Tech’s Chuck Clark forced a fumble in Arkansas territory that Woody Baron recovered to start momentum for the Hokies. Three plays later, Evans rushed up the middle with a herd of Hokies pushing him across the goal line for a four-yard touchdown. 24-7 Arkansas.
- With 6:28 remaining in the third quarter, Virginia Tech trailed almost three touchdowns until Anthony Shegog dove to make the interception in Arkansas territory. Phillips crossed the formation for a 33-yard gain into redzone. Evans faked and passed right to a wide-open Sam Rogers who made the one-handed touchdown catch. 24-14 Arkansas.
- On the following drive for Arkansas, the ball went off the hands of Austin Cantrell and right into Tremaine Edmunds’ possession on the Razorbacks’ five yard-line. On the next play, Evans ran right and hit Chris Cunningham for a touchdown pass. What was a shut out at first quickly turned into a field goal difference. 24-21 Arkansas.
- With a revived team on the field, between Isaiah Ford and Travon McMillian, the Hokies quickly moved down the field. To cap off the drive, McMillian dragged defenders six yards into the end zone to officially give Virginia Tech their first lead in the game. 24-28 Virginia Tech.
- Using the magic of Frank Beamer, No. 25 Terrell Edmunds leapt up for the fourth Arkansas turnover where he returned the interception but was stripped the ball. Shegog was there to recover the fumble at the Razoerbacks’ eight yard-line. Scoring off of that pick, Evans rushed up the middle for another touchdown to close out the game. 24-35 Virginia Tech.