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Perkins, Reed pace Virginia in rout of William & Mary, 52-17

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Perkins, Reed pace Virginia in rout of William & Mary, 52-17

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- Bronco Mendenhall viewed Virginia's game against William & Mary as something of a measuring stick for how far the Cavaliers have come in his three-plus years as coach, and the way they took command quickly and never let up left him pleased.

"It reflects maturity and again, experience, and so I take that as a step in the right direction," Mendenhall said after Bryce Perkins threw for two touchdowns and ran for a third and Virginia took an early 21-0 lead and drubbed the Tribe 52-17 on Friday night.

Letting up, even after leading 35-3 at halftime, was never an option, linebacker Jordan Mack said.

"We just keep playing the game, keep the throttle down and whatever the score is, just come out ready to play," he said.

Joe Reed caught a 40-yard touchdown pass and returned a kickoff 100 yards for the Cavaliers (2-0), who spoiled the return of former coach Mike London, the 2011 Atlantic Coast Conference coach of the year who was fired after the 2015 season and replaced by Mendenhall.

"I think they scored every which way you could," London said.

William & Mary (1-1) got its only points against Virginia's first team after recovering a muffed punt at the Cavaliers' 13 yard-line in the second quarter. The Tribe began the fourth quarter trailing 45-10 and having gained just 75 yards. It finished with just 193 yards as the Cavaliers got after freshman quarterback Hollis Mathis from the start. One week after running for 127 yards, he managed just 10.

"I don't know about rattled him as opposed to they got after him and they covered all the gaps and made sure that he was going to be under duress when he threw the ball," London said.

Mathis did not complete a pass in just four attempts and was intercepted once.

The Tribe intercepted Perkins twice, ending his string of 145 passes without an interception, and got another pick when Arman Jones picked off backup Brennan Armstrong and returned it 47 yards for a score. William & Mary has forced four turnovers in both of its games.

"If there is a time to have those, now was the time," coach Bronco Mendenhall said of Perkins' miscues.

Perkins' other touchdown pass was a 15-yarder to transfer Terrell Chatman, his roommate when they started their careers at Arizona State. The Cavaliers also scored on Nick Grant's 85-yard interception return and freshman Mike Hollins' 9-yard run on his first college attempt.

Hollins later added a 1-yard scoring run.

THE TAKEAWAY

William & Mary: Hollis Mathis set a program record with 127 rushing yards in the Tribe's opener, but was no match for the Cavaliers' swarming defense. He finished with 10 yards on 15 carries. His quickness will serve him much better against FCS-level competition, but his throwing needs much work. His lone attempt at throwing deep was very poorly thrown and never had a chance of reaching the receiver.

"We actually wanted to stop him before he ever got started," Mendenhall said of Mathis' scrambling ability.

Virginia: The Cavaliers have now won 10 of their last 15 games, and while they never drew more than 43,128 fans to 61,500-seat Scott Stadium last season, their student section was packed for this game and the announced crowd was 45,250, the largest since 48,609 saw them lose 10-0 to rival Virginia Tech with a chance to end the Hokies' long bowl streak in the 2017 season.

"It was noticeable the support we had today," Mendenhall said. "I really noticed the student section."

NICE DEBUT

Hollins was hardly touched on his first scoring run and showed the ability to gain yards in traffic, too.

He finished with 78 yards on just 11 carries.

MILESTONES

The game was the first for Virginia since they beat Duke 49-28 in 1989 that the Cavs did not have to punt.

It also was the first time since a 48-29 victory against Akron in 2002 that they scored on offense, defense and special teams.

UP NEXT

William & Mary: The Tribe returns home to face Colgate next Saturday.

Virginia: The Cavaliers play the second of three consecutive home games, hosting Florida State.

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Week 12: Virginia Tech reaches bowl eligibility while Navy's Cotton Bowl hopes take a hit

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Week 12: Virginia Tech reaches bowl eligibility while Navy's Cotton Bowl hopes take a hit

Virginia Tech dominated Georgia Tech to reach bowl eligibility for the 27th straight season, Penn state rebounded from last week's loss to Minnesota and Navy got no luck against Notre Dame.

Here's a recap of the week's local college football action.

Penn State 34, Indiana 27

The Good

Penn State's pass attack was largely inconsistent, but quarterback Sean Clifford still accounted for three touchdowns for the Nittany Lions, one through the air and two on the ground. The ground game was the saving grace for Penn State which got more rushing yards (192) than passing (179).  Running back Journey Brown gained 100 yards on the dot on 21 carries with one touchdown.

The Bad

The strength of the Nittany Lions this season has been the defense but that is two shaky games in a row on that side of the ball. Penn State had not allowed a first-quarter touchdown heading into last week's game against Minnesota. In the last two games alone, the Lions have given up four.

Indiana was able to effectively move up and down the field and outgained Penn State 462 to 371.

Star receiver KJ Hammler left the game in the first quarter due to an injury he suffered on a kickoff return. He would not return. Cameras saw Hammler celebrating the win with Clifford in the endzone tunnel.

With the Ohio State game looming next week, Hammler will be key to Penn State's hopes of pulling off the upset. Head coach James Franklin told the media afterward that he was "hopeful" Hammler would be ready to play.

The Crazy

When a team lines up to punt and calls a timeout, warning bells start going off in the heads of the opposing coaches. If you're planning on faking a punt and you need to call a timeout to make sure everything is set, you should just scrap it altogether. It's not going to work.

Indiana was on their own 44-yard line with a fourth and one upcoming. They lined up to punt and took a timeout. They returned from the timeout and this happened:

It didn't help that Peyton Hendershot bobbled the direct snap, but even if he hadn't you can see Penn State was just waiting for that fake punt. Two players later, Brown ran the ball 35 yards to put Nittany Lions up 27-14.

Notre Dame 52, Navy 20

The Good

After getting obliterated in the first half, Navy rallied somewhat to make the score more respectable, scoring 17 points in the second half. Receiver Mychal Cooper caught three passes for 73 yards

The Bad

Malcolm Perry averaged 130.2 rushing yards entering Saturday's game, but was held to 117 on 25 carries by the Irish. Notre Dame forced three first-half fumbles from him.

Notre Dame quarterback Ian Book torched the Midshipmen's defense with five touchdown passes, four of which went to Chase Claypool. Navy was allowing 310.6 yards per game, but gave up 300 by halftime and 410 total.

This loss hurts Navy's chances for earning the Group of 5's bid to the Cotton Bowl this year a bit. While it does not hurt their chances of winning the AAC, this loss will likely knock the Midshipmen out of this week's College Football Playoff rankings.

The Crazy

Saturday's game was the first non-sell out at Notre Dame Stadium since Thanksgiving Day in 1973. That is a streak of 273 games snapped. That is disappointing considering it came in a rivalry game that has been played every single year since 1927.

Virginia Tech 45, Georgia Tech 0

The Good

The Hokies came into Saturday's game with a chance to earn bowl eligibility for the 27th consecutive season, the nation's longest bowl streak, and they left the outcome in no doubt.

Quarterback Hendon Hooker scored three total touchdowns as Virginia Tech improved to 5-0 in games he has started.

The Bad

Tayvion Robinson took a helmet-to-helmet hit in the second quarter from Georgia Tech safety Christian Campbell. Campbell was ejected from the game for targeting.

The Crazy

Down 31-0 at the half, Georgia Tech elected to go for the onside kick. It failed and Virginia Tech got the ball at the Yellow Jackets' 49. 

Georgia Tech dominated Virginia Tech 49-28 last season. It was a role reversal on Saturday as Bud Foster did a masterful job with the defense. The Yellow Jackets were outgained 299-48 in the first half and held to just 134 total offense for the game. This game marks the first time Georgia Tech has been shut out since Oct. 18, 1997.

Freshman Landers Nolley II hits seven 3-pointers to led Virginia Tech over Lehigh

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Freshman Landers Nolley II hits seven 3-pointers to led Virginia Tech over Lehigh

BLACKSBURG, Va. -- Redshirt freshman Landers Nolley II is making up for lost time.

Nolley made seven 3-pointers and scored 27 points Saturday, leading Virginia Tech to a 79-53 victory against Lehigh.

"I'm one of the most impactful freshmen in the country," he said, adding that being forced to sit out last season allowed him to get better. "I got more knowledgeable, skill. I got in better shape, my mind (got) better. It prepared me for the moments I'm in now."

Nolley started slowly, "but in the second half I just started to let it come to me. I just started hitting shots and caught a streak and racked up some quick points."

The Hokies' 4-0 start in their first year under coach Mike Young is their second 4-0 start in as many years. It seemed fitting, too, that they honored former coach Charlie Moir with a moment of silence before the game. Moir, who died Friday, won a school-record 213 games at Tech from 1976-87, and was the coach in 1981 and 1982, the last time Virginia Tech began two seasons in a row by winning their first four games.

P.J. Horne added 14 points and Hunter Cattoor had 11 for the Hokies. Freshman Tyrece Radford added eight points and 11 rebounds.

Jeameril Wilson and Jordan Cohen each scored 11 for the Mountain Hawks (2-2). Lehigh trailed just 37-32 at halftime but managed just nine field goals and 21 points after the intermission.

Virginia Tech led 46-36 and used a 25-6 run to expand its lead to 71-42 with 5:50 remaining.

"We ended up turning the basketball over, which gave them easy opportunities and run-outs," Lehigh coach Brett Reed said. "The momentum of the gym and the game just kind of changed with our lack of execution and being sloppy with the ball."

BIG PICTURE

Lehigh: The Mountain Hawks committed 19 turnovers and Virginia Tech turned them into 26 points. Lehigh scored 16 points off the Hokies' 10 turnovers.

"They did a very good job of collapsing on the ball," Reed said. "A lot of times our ball-handler was under duress -- led to a lot of turnovers for us. But we also had some unforced turnovers, which ultimately kind of led to them being able to stretch the game."

Virginia Tech: The Hokies made a season-high 14 3-pointers and have made at least 10 in three of their four games this season. Nolley was 7 for 12 from beyond the arc and is 15 for 32 for the season.

UP NEXT

Lehigh has a quick turnaround, playing Misericordia on Monday night at home.

The Hokies remain at home and play Delaware State on Wednesday night.

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