Sports

Back in the game: Contenders again, No. 17 Virginia Tech looks to keep focus vs East Carolina

Virginia Tech quarterback Michael Brewer drops back to pass against Ohio State during the fourth quarter of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014, in Columbus, Ohio. Virginia Tech defeated Ohio State 35-21. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete)

Virginia Tech quarterback Michael Brewer drops back to pass against Ohio State during the fourth quarter of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014, in Columbus, Ohio. Virginia Tech defeated Ohio State 35-21. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete)  (The Associated Press)

The stakes are higher for No. 17 Virginia Tech.

A victory at No. 22 Ohio State last weekend vaulted the Hokies into the national conversation again.

Their next test comes Saturday when East Carolina (1-1) brings its potent passing game and history of playing Virginia Tech closes to Lane Stadium.

Last season, Virginia Tech (2-0) shut down the Pirates in a 15-10 win in Greenville, North Carolina.

Pirates quarterback Shane Carden and wide receiver Justin Hardy are the star tandem on offense for the Pirates, and the Hokies held them in check last season.

The Hokies counter with one of the nation's top defenses and a new spread offense that quarterback Michael Brewer operates with efficiency.