Clifton Highlights First Scrimmage
Defense dominates majority of practice
August 16, 2003

BLACKSBURG - The Virginia Tech football team held the first of three live preseason scrimmages Saturday afternoon at Lane Stadium/Worsham Field. In a contest marked by penalties, the Hokies' defense controlled the tempo for much of the day.

"I think what today shows is that we've got a lot of work to do, particularly offensively," said head coach Frank Beamer. "We had too many offsides, too many mental mistakes and too many poor executions. I thought we were sloppy overall. It just wasn't sharp like you would hope it would be. We just weren't getting anything consistent going, but I thought Marcus [Vick] made a couple of pretty tough plays."

The second-string offense got things started quickly. After a 17-yard run by Cedric Humes, Marcus Vick connected with Chris Clifton on a slant over the middle for a 35-yard gain. Carter Warley split the uprights on a 25-yard field goal attempt.

Late in the scrimmage, Clifton, operating as the No. 3 quarterback, kept the ball on an option to the right side and took it 63 yards for a touchdown. He finished the day with one reception for 35 yards, two rushes for 57 yards and a score. He went 0-for-3 passing with an interception.

That would be all the offense would earn as the defense dominated from that point on. Isaac Montgomery led the way with two sacks while Cols Colas, Kevin Lewis and Tim Sandidge each recorded one sack. DeAngelo Hall had two solo tackles, one for a loss, and an assisted tackle. Freshman Corey Gordon had the lone interception of the day.

Vick led the way through the air, completing 6-of-8 passes for 75 yards. Bryan Randall went 2-for-3 for zero yards. On the ground, Kevin Jones carried the ball three times for six yards. Mike Imoh rushed five times for 12 yards. Humes had the one carry for 17 yards.

Humes led the way catching the ball, pulling in two passes for nine yards. Clifton, Steve Canter, Doug Easlick, David Clowney (16 yards), Jared Mazzetta, Michael Malone and Brenden Hill each had one reception.

On special teams, Vinnie Burns punted 10 times for an average of 36.1 yards. He had a long of 52 yards. Brandon Pace made a 37-yard field goal on a set situation where the ball was placed at the 20-yard line. Warley missed his attempt wide right in the same situation later on. Pace then missed his wide to the left from 39-yards out.

Both sides drew several flags on the day. The offense was flagged six times for 35 yards while the defense drew three flags for 25 yards.

The next scrimmage will be Tuesday afternoon. All practices and scrimmages are closed to the public.