Oct 17, 2020; Syracuse, NY, USA;  Liberty Flames quarterback Malik Willis (7) scores on a touchdown run in the first half during a game against Syracuse on Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020, at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, N.Y.
 Mandatory Credit: Dennis Nett/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports

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No. 25 Liberty beats Va. Tech on 51-yard FG

Alex Barbir kicked a 51-yard field goal with a second remaining to keep No. 25 Liberty unbeaten with a stunning 38-35 victory over Virginia Tech Saturday afternoon in Blacksburg, Va.

Barbir’s successful kick came after a Tech timeout negated his attempt that was blocked and returned for a Hokies’ touchdown as time ran out.

Quarterback Malik Willis completed 20 of 30 passes for 217 yards in engineering scoring drives covering 75, 80, 95, 6 and 75 yards to put the Flames (7-0) up 35-28 with 1:41 left in the game. He had three touchdowns passing and one rushing.

But Hendon Hooker was 20 of 27 passing for 217 yards and answered that score with a 12-yard touchdown pass to Tre Turner to tie the game at 35 with 52 seconds remaining. Willis then got the Flames into position to try a decisive field goal with a crucial 8-yard completion to CJ Yarbrough.
Both quarterbacks had big rushing games.

Willis had 19 carries for 108 yards and a touchdown.

After leading rusher Khalil Herbert injured a hamstring returning a kickoff and was sidelined early in the first quarter, Hooker rushed for 101 yards a touchdown in the first half on his way to 156 yards on 20 carries for the game.

The Hokies (4-3, 4-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) went into the halftime break up 20-14 after cashing in on two Liberty turnovers for 10 points in the second quarter. Hooker scored on a 12-yard run up the middle after a fumble recovery gave the Hokies the ball at Liberty’s 30-yard line, and he drove his team from his own 9-yard line after another fumble recovery for Brian Johnson’s chip shot field goal with a second left in the half.

Willis was 10-of-15 passing for 121 yards and two touchdowns in the first half but also was responsible for both of Liberty’s lost fumbles.

–Field Level Media

Field Level Media
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