Georgia Tech: 38
In early November, Georgia Tech would put its five game winning streak on the line against the Virginia Cavaliers in Charlottesville, Virginia. The Jackets had not won at Scott Stadium since upsetting the top ranked Wahoos 41-38 on November 3, 1990 in route to the National Championship. Virginia entered the game with a 4-4 record while Tech boasted a 6-1 record, their only loss coming at the handle of the top ranked Florida State Seminoles in Tallahassee.
Tech got off to its usual fast start, jumping out to a 17-0 lead in the first quarter. Manget hit a 24 yard field goal for an early 3-0 lead, and Hamilton hit Kelly Campbell on a 4 yard touchdown pass to make it 10-0. Tech’s defense, which was unusually strong in the early going, held the Cavaliers again and the Jackets marched deep into Virginia territory on their next drive. The drive ended prematurely, however, when Tech lost a fumble at the UVA 18 yard line. But the defense continued to hold strong and Marvious Hester returned a Cavalier punt to the UVA 24 yard line. Gregory reeled off an 18 yard touchdown for Tech’s third score just a few plays later, extending the lead to 17-0.
In the second quarter, Rivers finally settled in for the Cavaliers and led the offense 79 yards in 15 plays to get Virginia on the board midway through the second period. Hamilton and the Tech offense answered on the following drive, however, moving 71 yards in 10 plays and extending the lead back to 17 when Gregory scored on a four yard run with roughly three minutes to play in the half.
It was then that the wheels started to fall off for the Jackets. Trailing 24-7, Rivers took his offense 62 yards in four plays to cut the Tech lead to 10 at 24-14 with a little less than two minutes to play. The ensuing Tech drive then went awry when Hamilton had a pass intercepted by Yubrenal Isabelle, who returned the ball to the Yellow Jacket 40. A steady drive ended with a 12 yard touchdown pass from Rivers to Kevin Coffey with just second remaining in the half, and the Ramblin’ Wreck lead had quickly been trimmed to three at 24-21.
The second half began as the first half ended. Virginia took the ball first and marched 80 yards for a touchdown to take their first lead of the game at 28-24. Thomas Jones accounted for the touchdown on a 35 yard run with less than three minutes gone in the third quarter.
But there was still some life left in the Yellow Jackets, and Hamilton again led his offense down the field. An 11 play, 81 yard drive ended on a two yard touchdown run by Gregory, and the Jackets reclaimed the lead at 31-28 midway through the third period.
Tech would not hold the lead for long though, as Virginia’s offense mounted another scoring drive on their next possession. The Cavalier’s marched 90 yards in 12 plays to the Tech 5 before the defense finally held strong, forcing a 21 yard field goal that tied the game at 31 apiece.
The Tech offense then fell asleep while Virginia’s stepped up its performance. The Cav’s added a touchdown on their next possession when Rivers connected with Billy McMullen on a 64 yard touchdown pass to reclaim the lead at 38-31. The lead increased to 14 after an 8 play 65 yard drive was capped off by a two yard Tyree Forman touchdown run. Tech now trailed 45-31 with just over three minutes to play in the game.
Hamilton quickly led his offense 67 yards in 7 plays to cut the lead to 38-31 with just under two minutes to play, but the comeback came out short when Virginia recovered Tech’s onside kick attempt on the kickoff that followed. The Cavaliers simply ran out the clock, defeating the Jackets 45-38 and handing them their first loss since the heartbreaker in Tallahassee earlier in the season.
Despite the loss, Hamilton totaled 282 yards of offense, making him the ACC’s all-time leader in total offense at 9,478 yards with three games remaining in the regular season.
GT – 26
UVA – 26
GT – 233
UVA – 265
GT – 18-26-233
UVA – 18-30-228
GT – 2-1
UVA – 2-0
GT – 1
UVA – 1
GT – 8-41
UVA – 8-16
Notable Individual Statistics:
Sean Gregory (GT): 22-119 rushing, 3 TD
Joe Hamilton (GT): 14-49 rushing; 18-26-1, 233 yards passing, 2 TD
Thomas Jones (UVA): 39-213 rushing, 2 TD
David Rivers (UVA): 18-30-1, 227 yards passing, 3 TD
Game Summary: http://www.ramblinwreck.com/sports/m-footbl/spec-rel/110699aaa.html