ATLANTA -- Georgia Tech used big plays to score 17 unanswered points in the second half and hung on to beat Virginia 31-17 on Saturday at Bobby Dodd Stadium. The Yellow Jackets (7-4 4-4 ACC) trailed 10-7 at halftime before scoring on three straight possessions -- a 54-yard pass from Justin Thomas to running back Clinton Lynch a 60-yard run by Qua Searcy and a 41-yard field goal from Harrison Butker.
Virginia (2-9 1-6) cut the lead to seven points with a long drive capped by a 1-yard touchdown pass from Matt Johns to Ryan Santoro. The Cavaliers then forced Georgia Tech to go three-and-out but the Yellow Jackets' defense sealed the outcome when Lance Austin intercepted a pass and returned it for a 24-yard touchdown with 4:03 remaining. Thomas was 5-for-10 passing for 122 yards and one touchdown. B-back Marcus Marshall ran 16 times for 127 yards and one touchdown a 67-yarder and topped the 100-yard mark for the second straight game.
Virginia quarterback Matt Johns making his first start of the season completed 27 of 44 passes for 220 yards and one touchdown but threw three interceptions. Running back Taquan Mizzell rushed 24 times for 131 yards and caught six passes for 45 yards. The Cavaliers enjoyed a 10-7 halftime lead on a 1-yard run by Daniel Hamm and a 30-yard Sam Hayward field goal. Georgia Tech scored on a 67-yard run by Marshall.