Tech falls to ODU in monumental upset


Photo by Drew Savage

Helena Savage

By Helena Savage

ODU claimed its throne as Monarchs of the football field after a devastating 35-49 upset against No. 13 ranked Virginia Tech two weeks ago, their first win of the season. When Hokie fans traveled from near and far to Foreman Field in Norfolk, the last turn of events anyone expected was the downfall of Virginia Tech’s progressive rise in the Top 25.

But Sept. 22, cast a pall over devoted Hokie fans, who colored the stadium with maroon and orange in hopes of an “easy” victory. With an overabundance of assurance that the Hokies would dominate the scoreboard (the Hokies were 29-point favorites), the stars seemed to align for another valiant Tech victory. However, the Hokies fell short, leaving much of the nation baffled over their astounding loss. So much so, that the next day, Virginia Tech’s Trevon Hill, was relieved from the team due to unconfirmed misbehavior and disrespectful conduct after the game. This uproar of disappointment from Virginia Tech fans alike came after a thrilling four quarters, and their encouraging defeat against ODU last year.

With the first half of the game tied, unexpectedly Bishop Sullivan graduate Blake LaRussa, ODU’s quarterback, played miraculously, scoring four touchdowns in the entire game. LaRussa, whose brother also played for Virginia Tech, fought for their win leading with 495 passing yards at the end of the game. This outnumbered Virginia Tech’s total passing yards, split between first string quarterback Josh Jackson and second-string quarterback Ryan Willis by 213 yards. Willis had 131 passing yards himself, after being thrown into the mix when Jackson shockingly broke his fibula during the fourth quarter.

Although Jackson was sidelined due to his unfortunate injury, he still stunned the crowds with another fantastic string of plays during the first three quarters, scoring two touchdowns, and ending with 151 passing yards himself. The Hokies also did not suffer a completely shameful loss, after they led with 156 rushing yards over ODU’s 130 yards.

ODU showed no reluctance to rush the field in a mirage of blue and white after the final touchdown was scored in the last few minutes on the clock. Excitement flooded Norfolk, and inevitably the loyal fans all around the nation. Although the night will live in infamy for all Virginia Tech fans, the Monarchs will certainly hold this win close to their hearts.

In the end, though countless tears of maroon and orange may have been shed, ODU can have their bragging rights for a year after a well-played game because Virginia Tech will bring the thunder and reclaim the field as Hokie nation next year.