Blacksburg, VA ó Despite a
dominating 55-6 victory over the University of Maryland, Thursday was a tumultuous day for the Virginia Tech football
community. The Hokies arose in the morning in first place in the ACC, waiting for nightfall so they could battle against
the University of Maryland, but early in the day, the team found out that Herma Beamer, head coach Frank Beamerís
mother, had passed away at the age of 86.
Although the passing of Mrs. Beamer was expected, the team did not take the news lightly. However, the coach decided
it was best for him to be with his team at Lane Stadium.
The Hokies paid appropriate tribute to the Beamer family by coming out onto Worsham Field and playing blue-collar
football from start to finish. Tech forced five turnovers, yielded just 197 total yards on defense, and blew the
Terrapins off the field, taking a 41-3 half time lead and coasting to the win from there.
Senior quarterback Bryan Randall led an offense that lit up the Terrapins for 393 yards. Randall completed eight of
14 passes for 137 yards and two touchdowns. Randall also had nine carries for 41 yards and added another touchdown with
Of the 64 plays Tech ran, 50 of them were on the ground. Junior Mike Imoh began the night as Techís primary running
back before he went out in the first quarter with a hamstring injury labeled as a strain. Imoh had seven carries for 35
yards and two TDs.
Juniors Cedric Humes and Justin Hamilton served as ample backup for Techís rushing attack. Humes gained 87 yards on
18 carries and Hamilton handled the ball eight times for 48 yards and a touchdown.
Five of Techís eight completions went to tight ends. Senior Jared Mazzetta hauled in two passes for 34 yards and a
touchdown, while junior Jeff King had two catches for 53 yards and a touchdown.
The other half of the show came on the defensive side of the ball. The Hokies forced four interceptions and a fumble.
Junior Jimmy Williams picked off a pass and ran it in for a touchdown. Xavier Adibi, James Griffin and James Anderson
also grabbed errant Maryland passes. Anderson also forced a fumble that senior Mikal Baaqee fell on top of.
Griffin led Tech in tackles with five and junior defensive tackle Jonathan Lewis tallied the teamís lone sack.
The Hokies also got the job done on special teams. Brandon Pace knocked in all seven extra point attempts to go along
with his two field goals. Two of Vinnie Burnsí three punts were inside of Marylandís 20-yard line and Jared Divelli
kicked off four touchbacks on seven attempts.
The Hokies won the coin toss and deferred options to the second half, giving Maryland the ball first. The Terps took
the field behind quarterback Joel Statham and did not hold onto the ball for long. After getting a first down on a
tipped ball, Statham threw an interception to Griffin, who returned it 11 yards to the Maryland 29.
On Techís first offensive play, Imoh scampered 21 yards to set up a first-and-goal from the eight-yard line. Beamer
decided to grind the ball four straight times until Imoh found pay dirt from one yard out, making the score 7-0.
The Terps got the ball and fumbled on first down after Anderson stripped the ball from wide receiver Derrick Fenner.
Baaqee recovered the ball on the 17-yard line for VT.
This time it was Randall who ran the ball 11 yards to set up a first-and-goal for Tech from the six-yard line. It
only took Imoh one try to reach the end zone, but the touchdown cost him the rest of the game, as he went out with a
Down 14-0, Maryland got the ball with 11 minutes to go in the first quarter on its own 20-yard line. The Terps
managed to travel 43 yards before having to punt the ball. The drive was highlighted by a Statham 16-yard completion to
Steve Suter on a third down.
After a touchback, the Hokies had a three and out, giving the Terps on their own 35 after a 38-yard Vinnie Burns
The Terps got all 38 yards back on a nine-play drive that resulted in a Nick Novak 42-yard field goal. The Terrapins
were aided by a 15-yard facemask penalty on Tech. On the night, the Hokies had eight penalties totaling 75 yards, and
Maryland had 11 penalties for 89 yards.
Ahead 14-3, Eddie Royal received the kickoff on the goal line and returned it 47 yards. The Hokies used the field
position to set up their third touchdown of the game. Humes ran the ball three times for 16 yards before Randall found
King wide open down the middle for a 35-yard touchdown pass. As the Hokies were coming to the line, ESPN broadcaster
Kirk Herbstreit commented on how King had a favorable matchup, and the Hokies proceeded to take advantage of it for the
By this time, the Hokies were in sixth gear in all aspects of the game. Two plays into Marylandís next drive,
Statham threw a terrible pass that landed in the arms of Adibi, and Maryland Coach Ralph Friedgen had seen enough. He
pulled Statham from the game and sent him to the bench.
Following the interception, the Hokies got the ball on Marylandís 23-yard line and wasted no time putting up their
fourth touchdown of the night. Randall ran for 11 yards and gave way to Hamilton, who carried the ball twice before he
found the end zone in the first play of the second quarter to make the score 28-3.
On Marylandís next drive, true freshman QB Jordan Steffy entered the game and tried to close the wound. The
one-time Virginia Tech recruiting target handed the ball off three times before completing a pass to Steve Suter for 10
yards for a first down. Steffy then threw two incomplete passes before he was sacked, resulting in a Maryland punt.
The Hokies got the ball on their own 16-yard line and put together a 12-play, 74-yard drive that led to a 27-yard
field goal from Pace. The drive that consumed five minutes and 43 seconds began with a 10-yard completion to sophomore
David Clowney. Randall later found freshman Josh Hyman on a slant for 20 yards, and later found King for 18 more. Humes
then carried the ball down to the Maryland 10-yard line, but the drive stalled after two incomplete passes, forcing the
field goal unit to tack on three points.
On the ensuing kickoff, Suter ran a reverse to Fenner who returned the ball to the 30-yard line. The Terps ended up
on the 45 after a personal foul on Develli. Despite the field position, the Hokie defense pushed Maryland back seven
yards on a three-and-out, forcing another punt.
Randall and the offense got the ball on the Tech 38 and took control en route to adding more points to the 31-3
total. The field general led the Hokies 62 yards down the field with a 16-yard rush and a 20-yard completion to Hyman.
Randall then took a snap on first down and rolled right before throwing back left to Mazzetta, who was wide open in the
end zone for Techís fifth touchdown, making the score 38-3. The Hokies traveled the 62 yards over the course of six
plays and only took one minute and 33 seconds to find the end zone.
After a touchback, Steffy threw an interception to Anderson on the 32-yard line. Anderson rumbled up the sideline 14
yards before meeting Steffy for a collision that sent the freshman to the locker room for the remainder of the evening
with a concussion.
With just 19 seconds remaining, the Hokies set up a 34-yard Pace field goal that made the score 41-3 as the teams
headed into the locker room.
Tech did not lose any fire during the intermission. On the first play of the third quarter, Hamilton carried the ball
22 yards and Tech was awarded 15 more after a Maryland personal foul. Techís drive stalled after a Maryland sack and
Burns pinned the Terps on their own 17-yard line.
The punt was followed by a Maryland three-and-out, which gave the Hokies the ball a minute and 32 seconds later.
On first down, Humes had his longest carry of the night, running to the left for 19 yards. However, this was all Tech
could muster before a Burns punt that placed Maryland on its own eight.
Again the Hokies forced a three-and-out, which forced another Maryland punt. Senior Richard Johnson returned the ball
17 yards down to the Maryland 38-yard line.
Unlike the previous two drives, the Hokies came out onto the field and moved the ball slowly down the field via
Cedric Humes. Before Humes could gain the tough yards, Randall hooked up with Mazzetta for 17 yards. Humes then carried
the ball six times for 28 yards down to the one-yard line. Randall finished off the drive by sneaking the ball into the
end zone to put the Hokies up 48-3 following the extra point.
Despite giving the ball back to Maryland on the kickoff, the Hokies found the scoreboard just three plays later.
Statham, who had returned after the Steffy injury, threw an interception on third down. Jimmy Williams picked off the
pass and ran it 34 yards to add seven more points to Techís side of the scoreboard.
Even though the Hokies were winning 55-3, the defense did not let up. Maryland traveled just 24 yards on eight plays
on the next drive. The Terps were aided by a pass interference call that could have gone either way.
Up 52 points, the Hokies put the ball in John Candelasí hands for the remainder of the game. Candelas had eight
carries for 30 yards in the fourth quarter. Nic Schmitt also punted the ball once for 43 yards.
The final points of the game came on a Novak 33-yard field goal. The three points was the result of an 11-play,
46-yard drive against VT's defensive backups that consumed 5:12 of the clock. The drive was managed by Maryland
third-string quarterback Sam Hollenbach after Statham was benched for throwing his third interception.