NC State football comes from behind to defeat Virginia Tech

NC State and Virginia Tech both go out on open dates, a necessary respite for the ACC seasons. They’ve both added time to make changes, adjust and adjust before Thursday night’s game on ESPN.

Set number 24 (5-2, 1-2 ACC) readjusted their goals after losing to Clemson and Syracuse and wants a strong finish to the regular season. Virginia Tech (2-5, 1-3) is adjusting to new coach, Brent Pry, and the demands that come with the training transition.

The News & Observer Chip Alexander and Luke DeCock are located at Carter-Finley Stadium. Check back for their live updates from the game.

Thomas TD catch: NC State 22, Virginia Tech 21

Thayer Thomas’ second snatch of the season, 20 yards from MJ Morris, gave the package the lead. A two-point attempt failed as Morris was sacked, but Wolfpack was ahead with 6:38 left in fourth.

Pennix TD Hunting: Virginia Tech 21, NC State 16

Wolfpack, trailing 21-3 in the second half, fell by five points before 12:15 left in the fourth quarter,

Quarterback MJ Morris, who mustered the group, found a tight end for Trent Bennix alone by 7 yards. Bouquet was unable to convert a two-point play as Morris’ pass was broken.

The touchdown came after Terrell Timmons completed 43 yards to the VT 7, the new receiver making a jump catch.

Thomas TD catch: Virginia Tech 21, NC State 10

After three points in the second inning by the Hokies, the package went 75 yards in six plays behind Novice QB MJ Morris for his first TD. Morris completed four driving passes, and Thomas hit for 16 yards before a 35-yard TD throw into the right corner of the end zone.

Wells TD Run: Virginia Tech 21, NC State 3

Grant Wells and Kaleb Smith, after calling the TD’s 85-yard throw, set up another hit by completing the 50-yard. Wells, who scored on the short for his first TD in the Hokies, ran 20 yards around the left end to score his second.

Smith TD catch: Virginia Tech 14, NC State 3

It took the Hokies one play to add to their lead as Grant Wells and Kaleb Smith teamed up on an 85-yard TD throw, and Smith won a foot race down the left sideline.

The Pack chose to bet fourth and ninth in VT 37 – the referee was a rebound – and the Hokies had a false starting penalty to start possession. But Wells went deep and Smith was there for the longest hockey game of the season.

Wells TD Run: Virginia Tech 7, NC State 3

The Hokies grabbed the ball to start the second half and went 78 yards on the first touchdown of the game. Quarterback Grant Wells completed 10 and 36 yards for a tight end Dae’Quan Wright and scored in the 4 yard dash.

Wells’ TD came after Tyler Baker-Williams of the Pack was called in to interfere with the pass in third place at NCSU 19 as Wells tried to hit Wright in the left corner of the end zone—Baker Williams broke the pass.

Halftime: 3-0 . package

Chris Dunn’s 35-yard field goal five seconds before halftime scored the first points of the game, and came after hockey used two time-outs to try to “freeze” the shot.

The Wolfpack team, with freshman MJ Morris at the quarterback, finally took advantage of a good position on the field after a 29-yard kick from the Hokies to take the lead. Maurice Thayer hit Thomas for 18 yards and got his first 6-yard descent in third and second in VT 17.

Morris was later judged that his knee had fallen when he took a low kick – the referee passed after an extended review – and Dunn turned 35 yards after the Hokies timeout.

Wolfpack fans were furious after the Virginia Tech kick with 6:25 per second remaining. Thayer Thomas of The Pack pointed out a fair pick up at NCSU 40 and got hit and flopped while trying to pull in a punt. Flags were thrown.

After the judges gathered, it was announced that there would be no penalty for the Hokies in the fair hunt but that the Wolfpack would be penalized for the suspension. The Pack took over at twenty, recovering Thomas’ stumble. Wolfpack fans screamed their displeasure as the gambling replay – and the hit on Thomas – was shown on the big scoreboard.

Late in the quarter, the Hokies took advantage of a false-start penalty against the Hokies at VT 17, who bounced back close to the goal line. Virginia Tech avoided a big penalty kick loss, but the Hokies was quickly followed by another false start and then a bad shot that resulted in a sack.

First Quarter: Negative

every defense. Neither foul showed much, with both teams making more false starts than the first.

Jack Chambers of The Pack started in QB but freshman MJ Morris was listed later in the quarter. This acquisition resulted in two running plays for Morris, a false start and then Morris being fired.

Virginia Tech had 35 yards and a Pack 28 in the first quarter. There were seven penalties – six false starts – and four first strikes, two from each team.

Injury update

It will be the package again without undone by Demi Sumo Karengby, who is still suffering from a foot injury. Defensive end Savion Jackson, who was injured in a Syracuse game, is also out. Wide receiver Devin Carter, who missed the Syracuse game, will return to the squad.

Pre-match reading

This story was originally published October 27, 2022 7:05 pm.

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Profile photo of Shep Alexander

In his more than 30 years at The N&O, Chip Alexander has covered North Carolina, University of North Carolina, Duke and East Carolina rhythms, and is now in his eleventh season at the Carolina Hurricanes. Alexander, who has won numerous state and national writing awards, covered the transition of hurricanes to North Carolina in 1997 and was part of The N&O’s coverage of the 2006 Stanley Cup in Canes.

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Sports columnist Luke DeCock joined The News & Observer in 2000 and has covered six finals for the Summer Olympics, the Super Bowl, and the Stanley Cup in the Carolina Hurricanes. He is the current president of the US Basketball Writers Association, and was the 2020 National Headliner Award winner for the nation’s best sports columnist and twice named North Carolina Sports Writer of the Year.

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