Virginia Tech too much for ECU|Pirates suffer first loss of the year

Published 5:18 pm Sunday, September 19, 2010

By By Associated Press
BLACKSBURG, Va. — David Wilson ran for two touchdowns and Darren Evans added a rushing score to lead Virginia Tech to a 49-27 win over East Carolina on Saturday.
Virginia Tech (1-2) rallied from a 10-0 deficit, scoring 28 unanswered points in the second half. The Hokies, who came into this season ranked No. 10 in the preseason Associated Press poll, had lost to Boise State and to Division I-AA James Madison last week.
‘‘This was a great win because it came after a very difficult week for our coaches and players’’ Virginia Tech head coach Frank Beamer said. ‘‘It came after we had to battle out there and didn’t look so hot at times. Our guys and coaches kept battling, and I’m proud of winning and how it took place. We had to hang in there, but we took some strides.’’
The Hokies won despite losing standout tailback Ryan Williams, a redshirt sophomore who broke Tech’s single-season rushing record last season (1,655 yards). Williams injured his right hamstring with 7:24 left in the first half and did not return.
Virginia Tech trailed 27-21 in the third quarter, but the Hokies took the lead when Wilson scored on a 3-yard run with 4:34 left in the quarter. The Hokies’ defense then held the Pirates (2-1) on the ensuing possession. Wilson, a sophomore, scored on an 8-yard run with 29 seconds remaining in the quarter to give Tech a 35-27 lead.
The Hokies put the game away on East Carolina’s next possession when cornerback Rashad Carmichael intercepted a Dominique Davis pass and returned it 68 yards for a touchdown.
‘‘He just made a great play,’’ Davis said. ‘‘He jumped a hitch route. You have to give it to him. He’s a great cornerback; he just read it.
‘‘I wouldn’t take it (the pass) back. I’d still make that throw. He just made a great play.’’
Carmichael’s second interception the Hokies’ first two interceptions of the season set up Tech’s final score. Tech quarterback Tyrod Taylor hit Jarrett Boykin for a 69-yard touchdown with 13:22 left in the game that gave the Hokies a 49-27 lead.
Behind Carmichael, Tech’s defense held ECU to just three points and 83 total yards in the second half.
‘‘We knew they were going to throw quick passes, but the tempo they came out with in that hurry-up offense had us on our heels a little bit in the first half,’’ Carmichael said. ‘‘After we got adjusted to the game, we started clicking more. The game started slowing down for us and we started to see the stuff we had seen on film. That gave us more opportunities to make plays, which we did.’’
Wilson rushed for 89 yards on 12 carries, while Evans finished with 91 yards on 10 carries. Taylor completed 8 of 16 for 199 yards and two touchdowns, and Boykin had 118 yards receiving.
The Hokies, who scored one touchdown in the loss to James Madison, finished with 448 yards of offense.
‘‘It was important for us (Tech’s offense) to get going because we needed some confidence,’’ Evans said. ‘‘We had some high expectations going into the season and we weren’t holding up our end of the deal, so we needed this to build upon. To put up the points we did feels real good.’’
East Carolina was led by Davis, who completed 30 of 44 for 251 yards, with a touchdown and two interceptions. The Pirates, who were looking to go 3-0 for the second time since 1999, scored on five of their first six possessions in the game.
‘‘We did a good job in the first quarter and we did OK right before the half,’’ ECU head coach Ruffin McNeill said. ‘‘But there’s another part of the game right after the half and the fourth quarter. Wish I could do something magical, but that’s a part of the game we have to learn. We talked about coming out after the half, but we didn’t zoom through and get after it.’’