- The Washington Times - Sunday, September 11, 2005

DURHAM, N.C. — Marcus Vick and the Virginia Tech offense didn’t need the Hokies to be perfect on defense yesterday. Of course, it didn’t hurt that they nearly were.

Vick threw for three touchdowns and Virginia Tech held Duke to almost no offense in a 45-0 victory at Wallace Wade Stadium.

Vick completed 12 of 19 passes for 172 yards, and many of the Hokies’ scores were of the quick-strike variety.

“Yeah, I felt comfortable,” said Vick. “This week I just concentrated on staying in the pocket and getting the ball out of my hands.”

Duke (0-2, 0-1 ACC) finished with just 35 yards of offense, the first time it was held to fewer than 100 since 1996. Compounding that, the Blue Devils committed nine penalties for 68 yards. Virginia Tech (2-0, 2-0) finished with 10 tackles for loss and held Duke to just 13 yards rushing on 35 attempts. In fact, Duke crossed the 50-yard line for only two plays, both in the second half.

Moreover, the Virginia Tech defense also outscored Duke. Roland Minor intercepted a pass by Curt Dukes with 1:54 to go in the first quarter and returned it 23 yards for a score to give the Hokies a 14-0 lead.

“I’m glad to be the first [defensive player to score for Virginia Tech this season],” Minor said. “I can put that one in the record book. I didn’t even know what to do in the end zone.”

Minor’s touchdown took some of the pressure off Vick, who was making his second start at quarterback for the Hokies. He threw a couple of long touchdown passes, a 37-yarder to Josh Morgan to put the Hokies up 21-0 with 9:15 left in the first half and a 35-yarder to David Clowney on the Hokies’ first drive of the third quarter that gave them a 28-0 advantage. He also threw a 7-yard touchdown pass to Jeff King in the first quarter.

“I thought every deep ball today was pretty good,” Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer said. “[Vick]’s such a threat.”

That doesn’t mean there weren’t any mistakes. Virginia Tech entered Duke territory on all seven of its possessions in the first half, running up 194 yards of offense to Duke’s 17. One drive ended on cornerback John Talley’s interception of Vick at the Blue Devils 29 early in the second quarter, and Brandon Pace hit the right upright with a 44-yard field goal attempt on the Hokies’ first possession.

Late in the third quarter, George Bell’s 4-yard scamper off left tackle for his first touchdown run made it 35-0.

Pace kicked a 31-yard field goal with a little more than eight minutes to play, and Branden Ore capped the scoring with 4:57 to go with a 4-yard run up the middle. Ore finished with 51 yards on 10 carries as the Hokies gained 180 yards on the ground.

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