Virginia looks to bounce back with road test at Wake Forest

The Wahoos have been outscored by a combined 34-0 in the first quarter.
Published: Oct. 16, 2020 at 11:29 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WDBJ) - In Virginia’s first three games of the season, the opening fifteen minutes have been the most forgettable.

The Wahoos have been outscored by a combined 34-0 in the first quarter by Duke, Clemson and NC State, despite winning the second and fourth quarters.

Head coach Bronco Mendenhall is searching for ways to get his team off to a better start before they’re already behind.

“Certainly, we’re demonstrating capability because we’re doing so in the second and fourth quarters," said Mendenhall. "The biggest discrepancy is in quarter one. And so, it might be inexperience at quarterback and just facing the different looks and getting acclimated. There might be other factors as well, but it’s making it difficult right from the beginning to have the kind of start that we want. So, we’re addressing it and considering the best ways to address it moving forward.”

That’s not to say UVA’s offense hasn’t shown bright spots.

Wide receiver Billy Kemp’s 27 catches are the most for a Cavalier through three games in program history, and the junior leads the ACC in receptions per game.

Kemp also caught the first career touchdown pass from Lindell Stone, who is likely to start for the Wahoos against Wake Forest while Brennan Armstrong recovers from a concussion.

Stone threw for 240 yards and three scores in relief of Armstrong last week in just his fifth career appearance and first outside of the fourth quarter.

“This time, you know, when you start the game in the first quarter, you’re not coming from behind," said offensive coordinator Robert Anae. "So yeah, there’s more balance. A lot of that we saw from Lindell was situational, as well. But now that he’s our starting quarterback, we also believe there are things that he does well, so we want to start there, and we also believe there are things that we can do running the football, and we want to start there.”

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