Terps Rally Falls Short To No. 21 WVU

Sept. 18, 2010

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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - Jamarr Robinson had third-quarter touchdown passes of 60 and 80 yards to Torrey Smith, but a fast start lifted No. 21 West Virginia past Maryland, 31-17, on Saturday.

Geno Smith threw a career-high four touchdown passes for the Mountaineers, while Noel Devine rushed for a season-high 131 yards.

Smith, a sophomore making his third career start, had two scoring tosses apiece to sophomore Tavon Austin and redshirt freshman Stedman Bailey as West Virginia (3-0) jumped ahead 28-0 early in the third quarter.

Except for Geno Smith's 5-yard scoring toss to Bailey to start the third quarter, West Virginia struggled on offense after halftime as it tried to eat up clock time. Smith finished 19 of 29 for 268 yards.

Torrey Smith caught three passes for 149 yards. His TD catches cut Maryland's deficit to 28-14. Terps added a 35-yard field goal from Travis Baltz in the fourth quarter.

West Virginia then put the game out of reach behind fullback Ryan Clarke, who carried eight straight times on the ensuing 16-play drive that ate up nearly nine minutes of clock and ended with Tyler Bitancurt's 23-yard field goal with three minutes left for the final margin.

Maryland was trying for a 3-0 start for the first time since coach Ralph Friedgen's first season in 2001.

Austin had a big day against the Terrapins with seven catches for 106 yards to add to his team-leading totals. Early in the game, he caught a 15-yard pass, threw a key block that sprang Devine on a 50-yard run, then caught a 6-yard scoring pass from Smith on a crossing route.

After West Virginia got the ball back near midfield, Geno Smith avoided the blitz and hit Sanders on a 32-yard pass play to set up Smith's 5-yard TD toss to a wide-open Austin for a 14-0 lead.

Bailey took over from there, stretching high to snare a 26-yard scoring pass in the back of the end zone early in the second.

Maryland punted on five of its seven first-half drives. Backup quarterback Danny O'Brien replaced Robinson just before the half, but O'Brien took a blind-side hit from Irvin on the final play and didn't return.

Maryland entered the game averaging 241 yards rushing but was held to minus-10. Bruce Irvin had three of West Virginia's eight sacks.

The Associated Press contributed to this report