BLACKSBURG — Blacksburg’s true opponent Friday was the cold.
The Bruins dropped five passes and fumbled four times but more than made up for it with seven touchdowns, rolling to a 54-6 victory over Jefferson Forest in the first round of the Class 4 Region D playoffs.
“I thought we played really well,” Blacksburg coach Thad Wells said. “We started out slow on offense, a lot of dropped balls and penalties, and I think the cold had an effect on that, but we eventually calmed down on offense and got things going, and our defense played lights-out all night.”
From the start, top-seeded Blacksburg (10-1) was firmly in control. After receiving the opening kick, the Bruins scored on their third offensive play, when quarterback Grant Johnston hit Tiquest Terry for a short pass, and Terry burst loose for an 88-yard touchdown.
The eighth-seeded Cavaliers (5-6) responded with a disastrous punt that went off the side of their punter’s foot, setting up a 17-yard touchdown run by Cole Beck and a 14-0 lead less than six minutes in.
Johnston, who went 11 of 19 for 269 yards and five touchdowns, said the defending state champions were comfortable in their postseason opener.
“It’s kind of our motto to have fun, relax, and let it all come to us,” he said. “That’s how we’ve been playing since starting the playoffs last year.”
Beck, a Virginia Tech commit, gained 79 yards on nine carries. He scored one receiving touchdown and two rushing touchdowns, including a 19-yard run with eight seconds to go in the first quarter that made it 21-0 .
By halftime, the Bruins were up 37-0. Camden Wise had a 24-yard field goal and a 24-yard receiving touchdown, and Terry caught a 16-yard touchdown pass. Terry led all players with six receptions for 168 yards.
A 36-yard touchdown catch by Brian Mitchell gave Blacksburg a 51-0 lead in the third quarter.
“They’re a good team,” Jefferson Forest coach Bob Christmas said. “They’re better up front than I thought they were. We didn’t do a very good job with them. We put them in some long yardage situations and then we’d give up a big play. That’s tough.”
Jefferson Forest scored with just under a minute remaining in the third, on a 78-yard interception return by Nick Rainey. The Cavaliers fumbled five times, losing four.