After reeling off three straight touchdowns in the first 8:25, the Virginia varsity cruised to a leisurely 31-7 victory over their alumni in the Cavs' annual spring football game today.
On the varsity's second play from scrimmage, running back Tom Virgorito broke through the alumni line and danced through the defense for a 52-yard touchdown. Three minutes later, after an interception by cornerback Corwin Word, the Cavs went 46 yards in seven plays, scoring on a one-yard scoring plunge by Rickey Callinder. With the score 14-0, linebacker Mark LeNeve made another varsity interception leading to a 19-yard touchdown run by Quentin Walker.
From then on, Cav Coach Dick Bestwick used substitutes, walk-ons, anyone.
"We don't look to get anything out of the first-string in this game," he said. "This is just the end of spring practice and I'm happy to get it over with. No one got hurt today and that's my main concern."
Bestwick didn't care that his team played a 10-7 game after the first three touchdowns. "I got to see some people," he said, "and I think we got pretty much what we expected out of this spring. That's all that really matters."
Bestwick hinted that he'd rather play an intrasquad spring game than an alumni-varsity event. "This game doesn't really have any real plus for us as a football team. We have a large enough roster to have a blue-orange game."
Statistically, Vigorito carried the ball three times for 65 yards while Walker had 78 yards in four carries. Cav quarterback Todd Kirtley played briefly, completing three of four passes for 38 yards, while backup Lindsay Delaney was three of five for 24 yards. Cole Egan caught three passes for 37 yards.
The alumni defense controlled the second quarter, throwing the varsity for 39 yards in losses their first two series. The alumni offense was considerably older than the defense, though, and advanced no farther than the varsity 45. A minute and a half before intermission, defensive back Gary Jamison intercepted at the Alumni 34 and ran back to the 19. But the alumni defense held, limiting the varsity to a field goal with one second left.
The highlight of the game came with 2:59 to play: the alumni got on the scoreboard with a nine-yard pass play when Chip Mark found Rob Berce alone in the end zone. On the ensuing kickoff, the alumni tried an onside kick and it worked. Kevin Keto, [TEXT OMITTED FROM SOURCE] the field and fell on the ball. Referees awarded the alumni the ball but they couldn't score again.
"That kind of thing just kept another group of players from getting in the game," Bestwick said. "This game isn't what we need. I mean I know what we have to work on, but the athletes coming here now are getting bigger and stronger all the time and we could benefit more by playing an intrasquad game."