BLACKSBURG — Virginia Tech quarterback Hendon Hooker suffered a left leg injury with less than a minute to go before the end of the first half against North Carolina.

According to coach Justin Fuente, he avoided a serious injury.

“I thought he was going to play the second half,” Fuente said. “He just couldn’t go. His leg. But he told me he was going to play, so I don’t think it’s a long-term issue is what I can tell you. That’s what I think right now.”

Hooker will get a bye week to rest up, but Fuente made it clear he will have to be close to 100% to make his return when the Hokies travel to Notre Dame on Nov. 2. The third-year sophomore briefly stretched with his teammates when they came out for the second half, but was clearly uncomfortable.

“We’re not going to put him out there if he can’t do the things that he can do,” Fuente said.

Hooker, who was making his third career start, exited the game 8 of 12 with 127 yards and a touchdown in the first half. He also had 10 carries for 41 yards.

Tech quarterback Ryan Willis threw an 11-yard touchdown to Damon Hazelton on his lone snap in the first half. The Hokies went three-and-out with him at quarterback to start the third quarter before switching to third-string quarterback Quincy Patterson.

Fuente said the decision was not injury related.

“We made the decision there very quickly to move on and bring Quincy in and obviously it changed what we looked like a little bit, but he did a great job of taking care of the football and running hard and made a couple plays in the passing game,” Fuente said.

Mike Niziolek is the Virginia Tech football beat writer for The Roanoke Times. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

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