AllNCAA Sports

Three Late Penalties Cost Virginia, NC State Wins 24-21 (9-22-23)

By: Darrell Owens

All Photo Credit: Darrell Owens-LMS Network

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA- The Virginia Cavaliers came into Friday’s night contest vs. NC State with their minds on one thing…grabbing win number one on the season. In the Cavs’ first three games, we saw three different versions of this team. Unfortunately, in game one vs. Tennessee, we saw a team that was outmatched. At the time, #12 Tennessee was clicking on all cylinders with a 49-13 win. In game two, we saw the Cavs get off to a slow start in the first half against JMU. Then the 3rd quarter Virginia took over and went into the 4th quarter with a 35-24 lead. A weather delay and JMU perseverance would give the Dukes a 36-35 comeback victory in the 4th quarter. Last week in game three, Virginia jumped to a 14-0 lead against an old foe Maryland at their stadium. From that point on it was all Maryland as they would score 42 unanswered points to win 42-14.

After watching those three games the biggest takeaway…Virginia has to find a way to play a complete game. They would have a tough challenge against their former OC Robert Anae and QB Brennan Armstrong. With all the hype around this matchup could Virginia meet the challenge head on?

We had to wait until the 2nd quarter before we saw points on the board. Brennan Armstrong found Kevin Concepcion on a 12-yard touchdown pass which led to an early 7-0 Wolfpack lead. Three minutes later UVA would throw a touchdown pass of their own. Anthony Colandrea hooked up with Malik Washington for an 8-yard touchdown pass that would tie the game at 7-7. Before the end of the half, Delbert Mimms III punched in a 1-yard rushing touchdown helping NC State reclaim the lead 14-7.

In the 3rd quarter, Virginia inched closer with two Will Bettridge field goals (21,36) bringing the score to 14-13. As the rain started to pour, NC State would extend their lead right at the end of the 3rd quarter, when Armstrong and Concepcion would connect again for a touchdown from 48 yards out giving the Wolfpack a 21-13 lead entering the 4th quarter. NC State held on to the lead until 0:36 seconds left in the 4th quarter. Colandrea led the Cavaliers on an 11-play, 66-yard drive that put the Cavs within two points 21-19, but the Cavs needed a two-point conversion to tie the game. A Cavaliers 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty after the Malik Washington touchdown catch put the Cavaliers at the 17-yard line decreasing their chances tremendously of tying the game. Anthony Colandrea would find some more magic under his sleeve when he found Malachi Fields in the end zone to convert the two-point conversion. Colandrea got too excited and took his helmet off while on the field which would give the Cavaliers another 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty which was enforced on the kickoff.

NC State took advantage of the great field position and we’re set up for a Brayden Narveson 48-yard field goal to win the game, but James Johnson blocked the field goal, giving the Cavaliers hope. Unfortunately, Johnson was called for a personal foul, which would set up the Wolfpack up to win the game on a 33-yard field goal to move to 3-1 on the season. The loss dropped Virginia to 0-4 on the season.

Virginia will travel to Boston College on Saturday, September 30 to take on the Eagles on September 30 at 2 PM. NC State will head home to face Louisville at 7 p.m. on Friday, September 29.