Virginia has ended the long, painful drought in the Commonwealth Cup, taking down No. 24 Virginia Tech in Charlottesville on Friday afternoon. The win is one of the biggest in program history, not only for snapping a 15-game losing streak to the Hokies, but also because it clinches Virginia's first-ever ACC Coastal Division championship.
The Cavaliers' thrilling 39-30 win had everything for a rivalry that's been increasingly testy with each additional Hokies win. The atmosphere in Scott Stadium was electric from kickoff to conclusion as Virginia saw a first-half lead disappear in the third quarter only to roar back with a strong fourth quarter.
Like most Virginia wins, the star of the day was Bryce Perkins. The senior quarterback completed 20-of-33 passes for 311 yards and a score while also leading the team in rushing with 164 yards and two touchdowns. Perkins has been one of the best players in the ACC all year so it was no surprise to see Bronco Mendenhall continually hand the ball to the team's most dynamic playmaker in the game's most important moments.
As you might expect given the importance of the win for Virginia fans, the victory was followed by a pretty epic field rush.
The ACC Coastal has been a roller coaster recently, producing seven different champions across the last seven years. The ACC has been playing in two divisions since 2005, and this stretch since 2013 has not only seen every team win the Coastal Division crown but five of them (Duke, North Carolina, Miami (FL), Pitt and now Virginia) were first-ever division championships. Prior to 2013, every division title was won by either Virginia Tech or Georgia Tech.