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Jaylin Lane, Jalen Stroman are the Hokies of the Game vs Purdue

Jaylin Lane 1 VT Purdue 2023 From VT
Photo Credit: Virginia Tech Athletics

On a wild day during which there was an almost 5.5 hour first quarter rain delay, Virginia Tech fought hard, but came up short falling to Purdue 24-17. Despite the loss, there were a few strong performances including a pair of Hokies who did enough to earn this week's Hokies of the Game honors.

Offensive Hokie of the Game: Jaylin Lane

Jaylin Lane may have been only to play roughly three quarters in this game before a leg injury kept him out of the final couple drives, but the MTSU transfer played well in this game for the Hokies.

Lane had 5 catches for 54 yards plus a touchdown as he was a threat all over the field who Purdue struggled to keep up with. This felt like a big opportunity for Lane to do a lot of damage after Fresno State's slot receivers gave Purdue issues last week with Lane stepping up to the task and giving the Boilermakers plenty of frustration.

Looking ahead, Tech's receiving corps has proven to have some good depth but with Ali Jennings looking like he could miss significant time, the Hokies could really use a healthy Jaylin Lane to lead this unit going forward.

Tech's tight end play was strong tonight especially in the receiving game led by Dae'Quan Wright who had a bounce back game from his drops last week vs ODU with 4 catches for a team-high 77 yards, consistently producing chunk plays in the process.

Bhayshul Tuten may have only had 4 rushing yards due to run game issues, but he made an impact elsewhere with 2 catches for 45 yards and a touchdown plus 2 kick returns for 64 yards. Meanwhile, the Gosnell brothers had solid games with Stephen having 3 catches for 72 yards and Benji adding 3 catches for 21 yards.

Defensive Hokie of the Game: Jalen Stroman

On a day where Virginia Tech's defense was on the field for 38 minutes and missed tackles were an issue, Jalen Stroman was consistent on the back end of the Hokies' defense and helped keep Tech in this game even as the offense floundered in the second half.

Stroman finished the game with a shared team-high of 14 tackles including 1 for loss plus a QB hurry. This was a strong bounce back game for Stroman after an early ejection last week due to targeting as he made plays all over the field in this game providing a significant boost at safety especially with Nasir Peoples out due to injury.

Tech is going to need Stroman to play at a high level going forward especially if Peoples misses more games with this being a great game for Stroman to build on.

Keli Lawson shared the team lead in tackles with 14 including 0.5 sacks plus a pass breakup in what was a much better game for Tech's talented redshirt sophomore linebacker. Antwaun Powell-Ryland once again made some big plays having 4 tackles including 2 for loss while Alan Tisdale got the start at mike linebacker and was effective with 7 tackles including 1 sack.

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