Virginia Defeats Syracuse 31-10

VIRGINIASPORTSDOTCOM Virginia wide receiver Michael McGrew (80) celebrates a TD catch in the arms of teammate Heath Miller (89) during second half action.
VIRGINIASPORTSDOTCOM
Virginia wide receiver Michael McGrew (80) celebrates a TD catch in the arms of teammate Heath Miller (89) during second half action.
VIRGINIASPORTSDOTCOM

Sept. 25, 2004

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) -- Marques Hagans had 283 total yards with two touchdown runs and a TD pass to lead No. 12 Virginia to a 31-10 victory over Syracuse on Saturday.

Wali Lundy added a 27-yard run for his 10th touchdown of the season for the Cavaliers (4-0).

The Orange (2-2), 51-0 losers to Purdue in their season-opener, drove 68 yards for a field goal on their opening possession, then managed just 41 more yards on four possessions and trailed 21-3 at halftime.

Hagans had scoring runs of 59 and 27 yards in the first half and finished with 81 yards on six carries. The Cavaliers have outscored their opponents 120-13 before halftime.

The Orange drove 80 yards in 15 plays with their first possession in the second half, Damien Rhodes scored on a 2-yard run. After a Virginia field goal, Syracuse again drove deep into Cavaliers territory, but Joe Kowalewski dropped a fourth-down pass in the end zone.

Eight plays later, Hagans hit Michael McGrew in the end zone from 39 yards out, capping an 8-play, 96-yard drive that all but clinched it.

The game could prove costly to Virginia. Defensive end and leading tackler Chris Canty had to be helped off the field with a leg injury in the late going. The extent of his injury was not immediately known, and may not be for some time. Virginia's policy is not to discuss players who are hurt.

Hagans completed 11 of 12 passes for 202 yards, including a 54-yarder to tight end Heath Miller to set up one touchdown and a 47-yarder to McGrew in the second quarter.

 

 

Perry Patterson, making his first start at quarterback for the Orange, finished 15-for-23 for 141 yards. Tailbacks Walter Reyes and Rhodes combined for 117 yards on 34 carries.

Able to stay in the pocket as Virginia rolled over Temple, North Carolina and Akron, Hagans was flushed in the first quarter on a third-and-8 from his own 41. Scrambling to his right, he finally tucked the ball and took off, outrunning the Orange defenders down the sideline for the TD.

A 36-yard punt return by Alvin Pearman set up Lundy's scoring run, which came on the next play when he started out left, ran into traffic, then bolted through a hole and toward to left corner of the end zone.

Hagans's 47-yard pass to McGrew came as he scrambled for time, then lofted a perfectly timed pass about 15 yards downfield.

Hagans also showed off his arm later, scrambling to his right and throwing a bullet back toward the center of the field, just out of the reach of defenders and into the hands of Miller for 54 yards.

The game featured a few firsts for Virginia. The third quarter marked the first all season in which the Cavaliers didn't score a touchdown, and Jerry Mackey's 8-yard sack of Hagans was the first allowed this season by the Cavs.