GAMEDAY College Football

Wake Forest 44, Virginia Military 10

By AARON BEARD
AP Sports Writer

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Mitch Griffis threw for 288 yards and three touchdowns in his first career start and Christian Turner and Taylor Morin added spectacular individual efforts on scores, helping No. 22 Wake Forest beat VMI 44-10.

Griffis started with veteran Sam Hartman sidelined indefinitely by a non-football medical issue. Hartman - who guided the Demon Deacons to last year's Atlantic Coast Conference championship game - was on the sideline in his black jersey, black shorts and a black cap to watch his understudy lead an easy win against a Championship Subdivision opponent.

Griffis' first TD throw was a perfect ball while moving to his right, with Morin diving just inside the right end-zone sideline for the 23-yard score and a 17-0 first-quarter lead.

Turner had preceded that with his own highlight-reel TD. He appeared headed for a modest gain when he was wobbled by a hit from Aljareek Malry in a crowd near the middle of the field. But Turner extended his left hand into the grass to stay on his feet, then popped free on the left side for a 35-yard TD.

Both scores stood after replay reviews.

Turner ran for 100 yards and two scores in the game to lead the Demon Deacons, who had 506 total yards but also committed seven penalties for 70 yards.

VMI, from the Southern Conference, sought its first win against a nationally ranked opponent from the Bowl Subdivision ranks. Its lone offensive highlight was Grant Swinehart taking a pass from backup QB Collin Ironside and sprinting down the right side for a 34-yard touchdown - though that came with Wake Forest leading 30-3 late in the third.

THE TAKEAWAY

VMI: Led by eighth-year coach Scott Wachenheim, the Keydets are coming off their first back-to-back winning seasons since 1961-62. They were trying to earn their first season-opening road win since 2002. They finished with 222 total yards, never reached the red zone and couldn't stop the run.

Wake Forest: The offense moved fine without Hartman, though this was hardly a clean performance. Notably, there were three holding penalties during two second-quarter drives, two to force a punt and one to wipe out an easy touchdown and force Wake Forest to settle for a field goal. There was another to negate Griffis' 2-point keeper late in the third, irking ninth-year coach Dave Clawson enough that he kicked at the turf in frustration, even with a big lead.


Scoring Summary
First Quarter VMIWake
Wake FG 10:43 Matthew Dennis 33 yard field goal 0 3
Wake TD 5:04 Christian Turner 35 yard TD run (Matthew Dennis Extra Point) 0 10
Wake TD 2:04 Taylor Morin 23 yard TD pass from Mitch Griffis (Matthew Dennis Extra Point) 0 17
Second Quarter VMIWake
Wake FG 4:39 Matthew Dennis 31 yard field goal 0 20
Wake FG 0:35 Matthew Dennis 33 yard field goal 0 23
VMI FG 0:00 Jerry Rice 42 yard field goal 3 23
Third Quarter VMIWake
Wake TD 9:46 Christian Turner 1 yard TD run (Matthew Dennis Extra Point) 3 30
VMI TD 2:01 Grant Swinehart 34 yard TD pass from Collin Ironside (Jerry Rice Extra Point) 10 30
Wake TD 0:42 Blake Whiteheart 27 yard TD pass from Mitch Griffis (Matthew Dennis Extra Point) 10 37
Fourth Quarter VMIWake
Wake TD 11:44 Jahmal Banks 14 yard TD pass from Mitch Griffis (Zach Murphy Extra Point) 10 44
Team Stats
  VMI Wake Forest
First downs 14 25
  Rushing 7 7
  Passing 4 16
  Penalty 3 2
3rd Down Efficiency 3-17, 18% 8-16, 50%
4th down efficiency 1-2, 50% 0-1, 0%
Rushes-Yards 32-83 41-212
Passing Yards 139 294
Return Yards 70 79
Completions-Attempts-Int 19-36-0 24-33-0
Sacks-Yards Lost 3-21 2-13
Punts 8 4
Fumbles Lost 1-1 1-0
Penalties - Yards 4-24 7-70
VMI Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
S. Morgan 13 27 79 0 0
C. Ironside 6 9 60 1 0
Wake Forest Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
M. Griffis 21 29 288 3 0
M. Kern 3 4 6 0 0
VMI Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
R. Raymond 8 38 4.8 0
H. Rice 6 24 4.0 0
S. Morgan 3 22 7.3 0
G. Swinehart 6 16 2.7 0
L. Schalow 3 0 0.0 0
C. Ironside 2 -8 -4.0 0
C. Shannon 4 -9 -2.3 0
Wake Forest Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
C. Turner 13 100 7.7 2
J. Ellison 13 80 6.2 0
Q. Cooley 4 28 7.0 0
D. Claiborne 6 13 2.2 0
M. Griffis 5 -9 -1.8 0
VMI Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
G. Swinehart 2 42 21.0 1
C. Knox 4 33 8.3 0
L. Thomas 5 29 5.8 0
I. Thorpe 3 11 3.7 0
M. Brimigion 1 10 10.0 0
J. DaSilva 2 9 4.5 0
J. Caussin 1 8 8.0 0
R. Raymond 1 -3 -3.0 0
Wake Forest Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
T. Morin 5 74 14.8 1
D. Greene 5 63 12.6 0
B. Whiteheart 2 50 25.0 1
A. Perry 3 47 15.7 0
K. Williams 3 22 7.3 0
C. Turner 2 18 9.0 0
J. Banks 1 14 14.0 1
W. Grimes 1 6 6.0 0
N. Ragano 1 5 5.0 0
D. Claiborne 1 -5 -5.0 0
VMI Interceptions
Player Int Yards
Wake Forest Interceptions
Player Int Yards
VMI Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
J. Culbreath 7 290 41.4
S. Morgan 1 33 33.0
Wake Forest Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
I. Mora 3 131 43.7
Z. Murphy 1 34 34.0
VMI Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
Wake Forest Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
T. Morin 3 13 4.3
J. Hensley 1 6 6.0
VMI Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
K. Bridy 4 70 17.5
Wake Forest Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
K. Williams 2 60 30.0
VMI Missed FG
Player Length
J. Rice 48
Wake Forest Missed FG
Player Length




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