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Loss to ECU still painful

In last year’s season-opener, Virginia Tech lost to East Carolina, 27-22, after the Pirates blocked a punt and returned it for a touchdown with 1 minute 52 seconds remaining.

“I’ve never had it happen before,” punter Brent Bowden told reporters after the game. “I just heard the sound and I looked back and I saw a guy running, and there was no way I was catching him. I can’t believe this happened.”

While there has been a year to get over the shocking upset, it has not made it any easier to review film of the play this week as the 22nd-ranked Hokies prepare to play the Pirates on Thursday night.

Every time it is shown, tight end Andre Smith said, a groan escapes the crowd of players.

“It’s a sore point for us,” Smith said. “That was our opener from last year, and to lose like that in the last minute of the game was just a feeling we never want to feel again.”

With Virginia Tech leading, 22-20, East Carolina’s T.J. Lee broke through a hole in the Hokies’ protection and blocked Bowden’s punt. Without breaking stride, Lee picked up the ball and sprinted 27 yards into the end zone.

Afterward, Coach Frank Beamer said he had never lost a game in that fashion.

This week, Smith said, the players have reviewed the tape about 10 to 12 times, “just to make sure we’re all squared away on how we have to block and so everyone is clear and conscience on what their job is.”

The goal, of course, is to make sure it doesn’t happen again on Thursday.

By Mark Viera  |  November 4, 2009; 2:16 PM ET
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Did he really say "everyone is clear and conscience on what ... "

Or do you not know how to spell conscious?

Posted by: NHOBX | November 4, 2009 4:23 PM | Report abuse

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