BLACKSBURG, Va. -- Quarterback Logan Thomas' record-breaking performance keyed an improved offensive showing for Virginia Tech in its 27-17 win over North Carolina on Saturday at Lane Stadium.
Thomas completed 19 of 28 passes for 293 yards and three touchdowns and became the Hokies' all-time leading passer in the first quarter. He moved ahead of Tyrod Taylor in Virginia Tech's record book and now has 7,308 career passing yards.
"Everything just felt good. The ball was coming out of my hands well. I saw the defense well," Thomas said.
The Hokies (5-1, 2-0 ACC), who improved to 9-1 in ACC home openers, have won five straight games since their season-opening loss to No. 1 Alabama.
The Tar Heels (1-4, 0-2) played without senior starting quarterback Bryn Renner, who saw his 29-game start streak end because of a foot injury. Sophomore Marquise Williams made his first career start in Renner's place and completed 23 of 35 passes for 277 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions.
"Marquise Williams did a heck of a job stepping in for Bryn after finding out he was going to start right before the game," North Carolina coach Larry Fedora said. "There's only one throw he made that we would like to have back. Other than that, I thought he threw the ball really well and that he managed the game well."
Virginia Tech scored three offensive touchdowns against a Football Bowl Subdivision opponent for the first time since its home win over Duke on Oct. 13, 2012.
The Hokies had a strong first half, outgaining the Tar Heels 277-147, but Virginia Tech managed only 64 yards in the final two quarters.
Thomas completed 13 of 20 passes for 230 yards and three touchdowns before halftime. Two of the scoring passes went to senior D.J. Coles and the other went to sophomore Demitri Knowles.
Knowles' touchdown catch covered 45 yards and gave Virginia Tech a 7-0 lead late in the first quarter. The Hokies padded that lead to 14-0 on a long drive they capped with a 9-yard scoring pass from Thomas to Coles.
North Carolina closed the gap to 14-7 with a long drive of its own. Williams connected with tight end Eric Ebron on a 6-yard pass in the end zone early in the second quarter. Ebron made a tough grab over Hokies defensive back Kendall Fuller.
Virginia Tech responded late in the second quarter with a four-play, 98-yard touchdown drive. Backed up near the Hokies' own end zone, Thomas completed a long pass to wide receiver Willie Byrn, who gained 83 yards on the catch and run.
The Hokies scored a short time later to go ahead 21-7 on Thomas' 5-yard scoring strike to Coles.
"I thought he made some good throws," Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer said. "The NFL, they're going to take that guy. If I was there, I guarantee I'd be taking him."
Virginia Tech slowed down offensively in the second half. The Hokies gained only 13 yards in the third quarter, but they put the finishing touches on the win with a 1-yard touchdown run by tailback Trey Edmunds in the fourth quarter. The extra point attempt by Cody Journell was blocked.
The Hokies' final touchdown was set up by a muffed punt recovery by Chase Williams at the Tar Heels' 17-yard line.
North Carolina made the score close in the closing minutes with a 24-yard touchdown pass from Williams to Quinshad Davis.
"We just made too many mistakes on the road to be able to win a game like that," Fedora said.
NOTES: North Carolina tight end Jack Tabb was ejected in the fourth quarter for an altercation with a Virginia Tech player. His status for next week's game will be determined by the ACC. ... UNC's Ryan Switzer had an 81-yard punt return touchdown wiped out by a block in the back penalty. The Tar Heels have had touchdowns negated by penalty in each of their last three games. ... Tar Heels freshman T.J. Logan saw his first career action at tailback. He carried the ball five times for 25 yards. ... Byrn's 83-yard reception in the second quarter was the seventh-longest pass reception in school history, and it was the sixth-longest allowed in UNC history. ... Coles became the first Hokies receiver with multiple touchdown catches since Marcus Davis had two against Duke last season. ... Byrn, who had 123 yards on four catches, became Virginia Tech's first 100-yard receiver this season. ... Hokies safety Kyshoen Jarrett recorded his second career interception in the second quarter. ... Virginia Tech has recorded a sack and an interception in 10 straight games.