ATLANTA, GA (WWBT) - Two blocked punts, two turnovers an onside kick recovery were too much to recover from for the University of Virginia, as the Wahoos fell to reigning national champion Auburn 43-24 in the Chick-fil-A Bowl in the Georgia Dome.
Michael Rocco hooked up with touchdown passes to Matoaca product Kris Burd to lead off the first and second quarters, giving UVA 7-0 and 14-7 leads, but Auburn just turned in too many big plays.
A punt block set up a Kiehl Frazier first quarter touchdown to tie the game up at 7. Then after the Hoos took a 14-7 lead, backup running back Onterio McCalebb ripped off a 60 yard run. He would convert from three yards out later in the drive.
Auburn lost their starting quarterback in the first quarter to injury, so they began a platoon with the fleet-footed Frazier, and Barrett Trotter. Frazier added another rushing touchdown and Trotter threw a touchdown to McCalebb as Auburn took a 28-14 lead. A field goal closed the halftime gap to 28-17. But a Tre Mason 22 yard touchdown run to start the third quarter made it a 35-17 game, and UVA didn't come much closer after that.
Burd finished with six catches and over 100 yards in his final game. UVA ends the season at 8-5.