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Saturday, November 17, 2012
Instant Analysis: Va. Tech 30, BC 23 (OT)

By Jack McCluskey

NEWTON, Mass. -- On Senior Day at the Heights, Boston College lost a wild, back-and-forth game to Virginia Tech, 30-23 in overtime.

How it happened: Virginia Tech made all the right adjustments at halftime, overcoming a 10-point BC lead at the break with two third-quarter TDs to take a 17-13 lead.

Bud Foster’s defense swarmed Chase Rettig and the Eagles in the second half, keeping them out of rhythm and putting the QB on the ground again and again.

With the Eagles backed up in their territory, trailing 17-16 in the fourth, the Hokies brought pressure on third-and-7. Rettig managed to hold out long enough to find Alex Amidon for a first down ... but there was a flag on the play.

Turns out, Rettig had time because left tackle Emmett Cleary was holding. The penalty wiped out the would-be first down, and after an incompletion on third-and-17 the Eagles had to punt.

A good return gave the Hokies a short field, and they converted on a 42-yard field goal to make it a four-point margin.

That meant the Eagles needed a touchdown, which seemed an unlikely proposition based on how the second half had gone to that point.

But Amidon took a handoff on an end-around 20 yards up the right side, with a 15-yard face mask penalty tacked onto the end of the run, and all of a sudden the Eagles were in business. Six plays later, facing a third-and-4 at the VT 12-yard line, true freshman David Dudeck took a handoff up the middle, found a hole and sprinted into the end zone to put BC back on top 23-20.

Logan Thomas and the Hokies would not be denied, however. The big QB led a 10-play, 62-yard drive to set up Cody Journell for a 41-yard field goal to tie it at 23 and force overtime.

The Hokies got the ball first in overtime, and Thomas led them to the end zone. He found Randall Dunn open in the back of the end zone on third-and-5 from the 6.

And so Rettig and the Eagles got the ball, needing a TD to continue. Dudeck was stuffed on first down. Rettig was sacked on second down. And on third down, Rettig got cleaned out as he threw for an incompletion.

That set up fourth-and-11 from the 26. The Eagles needed a miracle.

It didn’t come.

Rettig hit Dudeck on a screen but he was stopped short of the marker, giving the Hokies the win.

What it means: Virginia Tech’s bowl hopes are still alive. The Hokies have played in a bowl for 19 straight seasons, meaning the last time Frank Beamer’s bunch didn’t play in the postseason, BC starters David Dudeck and Justin Simmons were in diapers.

What’s next? BC will finish out the season on the road, traveling to Raleigh, N.C., for a matchup with NC State at Carter-Finley Stadium. The Wolfpack will be coming off a tough matchup with No. 11 Clemson.

Virginia Tech finishes its season at home with a game against in-state rival Virginia.

Jack McCluskey is an editor for ESPN.com and a frequent contributor to ESPNBoston.com. Follow him on Twitter @jack_mccluskey.