BLACKSBURG, Va. — No. 14 Virginia Tech dominated in all phases in a resounding 59-7 victory over North Carolina at Lane Stadium on Saturday.
The Hokies (6-1, 2-1) scored touchdowns on offense, defense and special teams in setting school records for points and margin of victory in an ACC game. Tech became bowl eligible for the 25th straight year after dispatching the Tar Heels (1-7, 0-5) for the 11th time in 14 meetings as ACC opponents.
The Hokies defense suffocated the overmatched Tar Heels, forcing three turnovers (two interceptions) and posting six sacks and 13 tackles for loss.
Tech quarterback Josh Jackson passed for 132 yards and three touchdowns in a little more than two quarters of work.
Hokies wide receiver Cam Phillips had five catches for 49 yards and a touchdown. His fourth reception broke the school’s career receptions record held by Isaiah Ford (210). Phillips has 212 catches for his career.
Running back Travon McMillian and wide receivers Eric Kumah and Samuel Denmark each had touchdown receptions as well.
Running back Jalen Holston scored on a 1-yard run midway through the fourth quarter.
Chazz Surratt and Brandon Harris split snaps at quarterback for the Tar Heels, combining for only 118 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. Harris left the game in the third quarter with an undisclosed injury.
UNC’s only touchdown came on Sarratt’s 43-yard pass to Anthony Ratliff-Williams with 14:05 remaining in the game.
The Hokies waited until the second quarter to score their first offensive touchdown, but they were still in control thanks to some big plays on defense and special teams.
Defensive tackle Ricky Walker scored on a 12-yard fumble return, and Greg Stroman returned a punt 91 yards for a touchdown to put Tech up 14-0 in the first quarter.
That lead swelled to 35-0 at halftime. Jackson tossed second-quarter touchdown passes to McMillian and Kumah, and safety Reggie Floyd returned an interception 69 yards for a score late in the second quarter.
Tech padded the score in the third quarter on an 8-yard touchdown pass from Jackson to Phillips. Joey Slye added a 37-yard field goal.
The Hokies pulled their offensive starters shortly after that. Backup quarterback A.J. Bush connected with Samuel Denmark on a 16-yard scoring pass with 3:01 remaining in the third.
NOTES: The last time Virginia Tech scored three nonoffensive touchdowns in a game was Oct. 6, 2007, at Clemson. … DT Ricky Walker and SS Reggie Floyd became the 49th and 50th players to score defensive touchdowns under Tech defensive coordinator Bud Foster. … UNC LB Cole Holcomb finished with six tackles, breaking a streak of four straight games with double figures. … CB Greg Stroman’s 91-yard punt return touchdown was the third-longest in school history. Stroman has four career punt return touchdowns, tying Andre Davis and Frank Loria for second-place on the school’s all-time list behind DeAngelo Hall, who had five from 2001-03. … Tech head coach Justin Fuente, who improved to 16-5 at Tech, bypassed C.B. Cubbage for the most wins by a Virginia Tech head coach in his first two seasons.