for this game

Virginia escapes wild finish to beat No. 23 FSU

Nov 20, 2011 - 7:20 AM Tallahassee, FL (Sports Network) - The final 1:16 at Doak Campbell Stadium provided plenty of drama Saturday night and kept Virginia's ACC title hopes alive after it seemed instant replay had dashed them.

Kevin Parks ran for the go-ahead touchdown with 76 seconds remaining and the Cavaliers escaped with a 14-13 comeback victory over No. 23 Florida State despite the Seminoles catching several breaks on their final series.

On 4th-and-1 from midfield, E.J. Manuel was sacked, but a facemask penalty kept the drive alive.

Three plays later, with time winding down, Bert Reed made a four-yard grab at the Virginia 26-yard line. His knee, however, came down inbounds and the final eight seconds ticked off as FSU's field goal unit couldn't get on the field in time.

Instant replay, however, overturned the call on the field and ruled the catch incomplete as Reed did not maintain possession while falling to the ground.

"It was a catch to us and it wasn't a first down either so because of that the clock should continue to run and it ran out," said Virginia head coach Mike London, who was visibly irate the game continued.

The break gave Dustin Hopkins a chance at a game-winner, which was moved up five yards after a defensive offsides penalty. Hopkins' 43-yarder, though, was pushed wide left in the final twist of a roller coaster finish.

Virginia (8-3, 5-2 ACC), which has won four straight, can capture the Coastal Division with a win against Virginia Tech in its season finale next Saturday.

The Seminoles (7-4, 5-3), who had never lost to Virginia at home, had a five- game win streak snapped.

"Coming into a place like this -- it's got great college football tradition - and win like this, it might be one of the best wins I've been involved with in my whole coaching career including the championship at Richmond," London said.

Michael Rocco threw a touchdown pass to Perry Jones and ended with 238 yards, 65 of which came on four straight completions prior to Parks' game-winning TD.

The march was only made possible because Manuel was sacked on third down to push Florida State out of field goal range with two minutes remaining.

Manuel ended with 200 yards and a touchdown on 18-of-31 passes, while Reed caught four balls for 104 yards in the loss.

Virginia opened the scoring on the first play of the second quarter, as Jones hung on to Rocco's pass while taking a big hit in the left corner of the end zone. Manuel lost a fumble deep in enemy territory prior to the TD.

The Seminoles tied things when Ja'Baris Little capped an 11-play, 75-yard drive with a one-yard TD grab with under five minutes to go before halftime.

The Seminoles then forced a quick punt, and Greg Reid's 34-yard return helped set up Hopkins' 26-yard field goal in the final minute.

The big play of the third quarter occurred midway through, with Reed getting taken down at the Virginia one-yard line following a 68-yard reception. The Seminoles had to settle for a 21-yard Hopkins field goal.

"Virginia hung in the game; made enough plays to win at the end, made the play they needed to make, had the drive they needed to get. It was all on us as far as keep leaving them in the game," FSU head coach Jimbo Fisher said.

Game Notes

Jermaine Thomas led FSU with 69 yards on 14 carries...Jones wound up with 62 yards on nine receptions...Virginia rushed for 78 yards, 110 below its season average coming in...The Cavaliers are now 1-8 in Tallahassee.