Virginia Tech mismanages end of game, falls to Liberty in last seconds

Norm Wood, The Daily Press
·1 min read

Just when it looked like Virginia Tech would escape Saturday with a victory in one of the most dramatic ways possible, a timeout from the Hokies' sideline gave Liberty a second chance in the waning seconds, and enough wiggle room to pull out a 38-35 win.

Jermaine Waller’s 59-yard blocked field goal return for an apparent touchdown was negated with eight seconds left because Tech called a timeout before Liberty’s Alex Barbir attempted a 59-yard field goal. After an 8-yard completion moved No. 25 Liberty (7-0) a little closer, Barbir connected on a 51-yard field goal, sending the Flames' sideline into a frenzy with one second left.

Tech (4-3) tried to lateral the ball around after receiving the final kickoff, but couldn’t get anything started.

Barbir’s kick was the longest of his career. He came into Saturday just 2-of-6 on field goal attempts of longer than 29 yards.

Tech quarterback Hendon Hooker with 156 rushing yards and completed 20-of-27 passes for 217 yards and three touchdowns. Liberty quarterback Malik Willis completed 20-of-30 passes for 217 yards and three touchdowns, and added 108 rushing yards and a touchdown.

Tech lost for the 15th time in its last 16 games when it’s surrendered at least 100 rushing yards to a quarterback. Liberty out-gained Tech 466-418 in yardage.

Norm Wood, nwood@dailypress.com

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