It didn’t take long for Virginia Tech to turn Thursday night’s game against Syracuse into a laugher.
The Hokies roared to a 27-point lead at halftime and cruised to a 38-10 win against the Orange at Lane Stadium, getting level at .500 overall on the season.
Virginia Tech (4-4, 3-1 ACC) dominated with a total team effort, nearly quadrupling the Orange in total yardage with a 528-138 advantage.
The Hokies ran for a season-high 318 yards, getting 205 combined from tailbacks Bhayshul Tuten and Malachi Thomas. It was the most by Tech under head coach Brent Pry.
Quarterback Kyron Drones ran for 65 yards and threw for 194 and a touchdown, breaking Sean Glennon’s post-1987 Hokies record of 149 consecutive passes without an interception in the process. Drones has now thrown 151 passes without a pick.
Da’Quan Felton caught a pair of touchdown passes, one on a trick play from Thomas to lead a balanced offensive attack.
Not to be outdone, the Hokies defense held Syracuse to zero rushing yards, the fewest by a Hokies opponent since Florida State’s minus-15-yard effort in 2012.
Tech sacked quarterback Garrett Shrader eight times, its most in a game since a 2016 Thursday nighter against Miami. The Hokies have 15 sacks in the last two games, their most in a two-game span since the 1999 season.
Tucker Holloway had a 57-yard punt return and kicker John Love made five field goals, rounding out the total effort.
The Orange (4-4, 0-4 ACC) has lost four straight for the fourth time in the last five seasons.
It was all Hokies from the start. Love started the scoring with a 43-yard field goal before Tech got in the end zone on a trick play when running back Thomas took a pitch, pulled up and threw a 16-yard touchdown pass to Felton for a 10-0 lead.
A 57-yard punt return by Holloway after Syracuse’s third straight three-and-out to start the game set up another Love field goal, this time from 32 yards, to make it 13-0. The Hokies outgained the Orange 118-6 in the first quarter.
Tech extended its lead to 16-0 early in the second quarter on Love’s third field goal of the night, a 38-yarder then made it 23-0 when Drones went deep, hitting Felton in stride on a 62-yard touchdown up the sideline with 7:13 left in the half.
After a Syracuse field goal, Tech scored once more in the first half, getting into the red zone after Drones connected with Jaylin Lane on a 41-yard pass. Two plays later, Tuten spun his way into the end zone for a 2-yard touchdown run to make it 30-3.
Tech held a 341-62 advantage in yards at the break, gaining more yards in one half that it did in full games against Purdue (286), Rutgers (319) and Florida State (313).
It was the widest first-half margin for the Hokies since they led Georgia Tech 31-0 after 30 minutes in 2019 in an eventual 45-0 win.
The second half was mostly academic. Tech scored on a safety when Cole Nelson forced Shrader to throw the ball backward out of the end zone and, after a Syracuse touchdown pass to Dan Villari, Love tacked on a two more field goals.
Box Score: Virginia Tech 38, Syracuse 10