Tech completes second football scrimmage
Offense accounts for seven touchdowns
April 14, 2007

BLACKSBURG, Va. - The Virginia Tech football team held its second scrimmage of the week on Saturday afternoon at Lane Stadium, and unlike Tuesday's scoreless affair, this contest saw plenty of action in the end zone.

It was not a matter of poor defensive effort, however. Saturday's game was very much focused on red-zone opportunities and completing drives, whereas the offense was continually turned in the other direction following first downs on Tuesday.

The quarterbacks once again had some success, as Sean Glennon went 8-of-14 for 160 yards and three touchdowns, and Ike Whitaker completed 8-of-17 for one touchdown while also contributing one score on foot. Cory Holt attempted just five passes, completing three for seven yards.

After not playing on Tuesday, tailback Branden Ore showed he hasn't skipped a beat, rushing for 57 yards on just three carries. Two of those three touches went for touchdowns, including a shifty 48-yard scamper. Jahre Cheeseman got some work in with the second-team, displaying some nice cuts and few bruising runs as part of his nine-carry, 18-yard performance. Dustin Pickle tallied 17 yards on five carries, and Elan Lewis ripped off an 18-yard run.

Wide receiver Justin Harper had a big day, hauling in four balls for 108 yards and two scores, including an athletic 85-yard catch-and-run. Tight end Sam Wheeler added a pair of catches for 33 yards and a touchdown, while split end Josh Morgan caught three for 16 yards and a score of his own.

The first team defense saw a little more action on Saturday than they did in the first scrimmage. Linebacker Vince Hall led the charge with eight tackles, including a sack for an 11-yard loss. Xavier Adibi made seven stops, while Demetrius Taylor and Orion Martin each chipped five tackles. Taylor also blocked a punt, while Martin pressured the quarterbacks with a sack and several hurries. Free safety D.J. Parker and cornerback Brandon Flowers paced the secondary with four tackles apiece.

The first portion of the scrimmage was designed to work on red-zone situations, and both sides of the ball had some success in the eight-series contest.

Starting on the 25-yard line, Ore led off with a six-yard run before an offsides call on the defense. Glennon then hit Harper for a seven-yard gain before Ore plowed into the end zone from three yards out.

Whitaker took over at quarterback for the next two situations. He capped off the first series - which began on the 15-yard line - with a 2-yard touchdown run, but on the first play of the next series, he threw a pass that was picked off by rover Dorian Porch.

On four of the final five red zone series, the defense produced three-and-outs, but the offense's third score of the contest came on a three-yard toss from Glennon to Harper on a drive that started from the five-yard line.

The second half of the practice was played in the form of two 10-minute quarters. Starting from its own 35-yard line, the first-team offense wasted little time finding paydirt against the second-team defense. Glennon connected on a 12-yard gain with Eddie Royal before a five-yard offsides call against the defense. On the next play, Ore danced through the line before breaking off his 48-yard touchdown run down the right sideline.

The first-team defense came in to halt the second-team offense to a three-and-out. Punter Brent Bowden then boomed a kick to the other 15-yard line, when the No. 1 offense came back in and scored on another big play. Glennon and Harper hooked up for their second touchdown connection of the day, only this time it was an 85-yard score on the first snap of the series.

The No. 2 offense responded to their previous three-and-out by marching down the field on a 15-play drive led by Whitaker and Cheeseman. Whitaker completed 6-of-8 passes on the drive for 46 yards - including a 13-yard score to Morgan - while Cheeseman turned in five carries for 15 yards.

The defense settled in and held the offense scoreless for the next seven series. The final score of the day came on the next to last drive, when Glennon registered his third touchdown pass of the contest. A 14-yard Wheeler catch was sandwiched by a pair of Dustin Pickle runs, before Glennon and Wheeler teamed up for a 19-yard toss to the end zone.

The Hokies will wrap up their spring practice schedule with the annual spring game on April 21st at 2 p.m. in Lane Stadium.