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Duke easily defeats Virginia 42-17

Associated Press Modified: October 6, 2012 at 7:31 pm •  Published: October 6, 2012

After going without any yards on its first drive of the second half, Virginia had to punt from its own 5-yard line. Vernon returned the punt all the way to the Cavaliers' 22, and a holding penalty that was added on to the punt return gave Duke the ball at Virginia's 12.

Boone then lofted a swing pass to a wide-open Juwan Thompson for a touchdown on the Blue Devils' first play of the drive, giving Duke a 21-17 advantage.

On the Cavaliers' next possession, the Blue Devils' defense stopped Kevin Parks on a fourth-and-1 from Virginia's 47-yard line.

Duke took advantage of its optimal field position, gaining the 45 yards in four plays. Jela Duncan finished the drive with a powerful 11-yard touchdown run to go up by 11 points.

"I feel like that was a huge turn in momentum," Duke offensive lineman Dave Harding said. "Going into halftime, I felt like we were a little bit low on energy. Coming out, the defense did a great job stopping them. I think it really did get the energy swung in our favor. The crowd was really into it, and you could just feel that something good was happening."

Virginia's offense continued to sputter the rest of the quarter. After its powerful first half, the Cavaliers only had 14 yards rushing in the third quarter and then minus-12 in the fourth.

The only scoring of the fourth quarter came when Vernon caught a 45-yard high-arcing pass from Boone, and when Thompson had a 34-yard touchdown rush for the final margin.

"We had a great time in the locker room afterward, celebrating Conner's big record-breaking performance," Harding said. "Everybody's proud of Boone for stepping in. It was just a great time."