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December 28, 2012

Instant Analysis: Epitomizing Win

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ORLANDO, Fla. -- All season, Virginia Tech hasn't made it easy on itself.

The Hokies had to win its final two games, on last-second finishes, to even reach the Russell Athletic Bowl. And those wins were anything but pretty. So for Virginia Tech to pull out a win in what might be one of the worst combined offensive performances in a bowl game, it's a fitting end to the season.

In The Hokies' 13-10 overtime win over Rutgers tonight, the two teams set a RAB record for futility with a combined 21 points. The Scarlet Knights matched Virginia Tech's ineffectiveness, which pushed them back on the second possession of overtime and led to 42-yard field goal that was missed.

Tonight showed examples of the capabilities of the Hokies, such as a suffocating defense that saw a clutch interception in the fourth quarter by junior cornerback Antone Exum. Offensively, junior quarterback Logan Thomas got rolling in the fourth quarter with a pair of big completions and a well-thrown 22-yard touchdown pass to senior wide receiver Corey Fuller in the left corner of the end zone.

It also showed the shortcomings, as the offense had just 80 yards through three quarters. Individually, senior wide reeiver Marcus Davis came up just short (10 yards) of setting the school's season-record for receiving yards.

Then, there was redemption. As he's done three times now, junior kicker Cody Journell had the game-winning field goal, this one in overtime. And just like the Virginia game, it came after an earlier miss. Tonight's was from 52 yards.

But ultimately, a season that's had such up and downs (a lot of downs) ends on top. A streak of winning seasons remains intact at 20.

There will almost certainly be changes as a result of this season. Assistant coach Kevin Sherman looks to be on his way to Purdue, though he denied the speculation to reporters after the game and more coaches will be shuffling.

But at least there's some bit saved from this season. Until the beginning of next season, the Hokies will be coming off a win, despite how ugly it was.



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