And the Hurricanes might have saved their season.
"Obviously, I'm extremely proud of our football team", Diaz said postgame. "When things are going poorly, our guys, they get back out there and they continue to fight again". Star running back Deejay Dallas turned in a solid performance in the victory, racking up 63 yards on 13 carries on the ground. Redemption never tasted so sweet for Perry, who finished 16 for 27 (59%) for 182 yards passing, 18 yards rushing, and 2 total TD's. Diaz wasn't shy about publicly announcing that he would be more hands on with the defense this week after the unit gave up 42 points to Virginia Tech the previous game.
Bryce Perkins connected on his first nine passes and finished 24 for 41 for 244 yards for Virginia (4-2, 2-1).
Apparently, those oddsmakers saw this coming. Davidson made his first collegiate field goal of his career with ten minutes remaining in the fourth quarter to put the Canes up 10-6. They're now tied with North Carolina for first place in the Coastal Division, and could be joined there by Duke if the Blue Devils beat Georgia Tech on Saturday.
Virginia, who's only points were off field goals, made their third field goal of the game shortly after to close the gap and make the score 10-9. The Hurricanes red zone defense was elite. The Hurricanes entered Friday night's game with one of the worst red-zone defenses in the country. That's plain and simple.
Prior to Friday, the Canes' defense had allowed 11 touchdowns when backed up against their own end zone. So that's on us. "Defense did its job holding the pillar, and we didn't do ours".
Miami went 78 yards in 11 plays on the game's first possession, with Dallas taking a short pass from Perry and rumbling the rest of the way for a 17-yard score. The Hurricanes' next six drives went almost nowhere - 33 yards on 23 plays, all six possessions ending in punts.
But the defense more than did its part. They ended up settling for a field goal.
"Those two opportunities that we didn't capitalize on hurt our team", Virginia coach Bronco Mendenhall said.
That fight, which Diaz and several players kept referring to as "relentlessness", was highlighted in two defensive stands - one in the second quarter and another in the fourth. Trainers quickly rushed onto the field, and covered his leg with towels to prevent it from being seen. Davidson last kicked in a game November 11, 2016, making a field goal for San Antonio's Ronald Reagan High. Virginia hasn't had an appearance streak of six weeks or more since a 21-poll run spanning the 2004 and 2005 seasons. "That being said, what changed today is that the team that made the plays in the fourth quarter was the Miami Hurricanes". When Virginia's offense lined up to resume play, Carter was still on the field - earning him another penalty for an illegal substitution.
Virginia: Host Duke on October 19, Virginia's first home game since September 21. Miami has now won four of the last five games against Virginia.