Oct. 23, 2010
CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. - Antwine Perez had two interceptions and a fumble recovery, and Danny O'Brien matched a career high with three touchdown passes to lead Maryland to an emotional 24-21 victory over Boston College on Saturday.
O'Brien completed 26 of 39 passes for 179 yards, hitting Torrey Smith, Ronnie Tyler and Kerry Boykins on touchdown passes for Maryland (5-2, 2-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) which held off a fourth-quarter rally by the Eagles.
"It was a very courageous win by our players," Maryland head coach Ralph Friedgen said. "We played very well, even when the momentum changed with about nine minutes to go in the fourth quarter."
The Terps were playing without redshirt freshman Pete DeSouza, who was lost for the season less than 48 hours before kickoff. The starting right tackle was injured in a traffic accident Thursday and had surgery Friday to fix fractures both of his lower legs.
"There were some emotions involved prior to the game with the accident to Pete DeSouza," Friedgen said.
But O'Brien, also a redshirt freshman, didn't seem rattled. He did not turn the ball over and connected with eight different receivers.
Nine of his passes went to Smith, while Tyler added five catches for 57 yards. Adrian Cannon also caught four passes for 23 yards for the Terps who utilized a short passing game to counter BC's rush defense, the top-rated unit in the ACC.
"We knew it was going to be very difficult to run the ball against Boston College, but we couldn't give up on it and had to be patient," Friedgen said. "A lot of our players showed up to make plays, that was much improved."
Maryland went ahead late in the first quarter on a 2-yard scoring pass from O'Brien to Smith. The score completed a 13-play drive which was set up by a 29-yard punt return from Tony Logan, the nation's second-leading returner.
After BC tied the game at 7-all with 12:09 left in the second quarter on a Chase Rettig to Bobby Swigert 3-yard TD connection, the Terrapins cashed in two of the Eagles' three turnovers.
Kenny Tate forced Montel Harris to do something he rarely does, fumble the football. The junior knocked the ball free, his league-leading fourth forced fumble, and Perez recovered at the BC 38. Nine plays later O'Brien hit Tyler on a 9-yard touchdown pass
On BC's next offensive play, Rettig was intercepted by Perez and he returned it to the Eagles' 22. O'Brien directed another short touchdown march, connecting with Boykins on a 6-yard scoring toss on third-and-goal with 2:38 to go in the opening half.
Maryland got a 26-yard field goal from Travis Baltz to go ahead 24-7 with 13 seconds to play in the third quarter before BC started to get things going.
Rettig hit Ifeanyi Moma for a 23-yard pass to the Maryland 7, and Harris ran it three times for the score that made it 24-14 with 11:20 to play. After BC forced a punt, Rettig threw a long pass to Moma that was high and off his fingertips, only to be caught by Swigert for a gain of 63 yards.
Swigert was pushed out at the 6, and a roughing the passer penalty moved it to the 3. Harris, who rushed for 116 yards on 27 carries, ran it in from there to make it 24-21 with 7:10 left.
Harris became the fourth player in BC history - and the first junior - to reach the 3,000 yard milestone with his performance.
The Eagles had two more chances with the ball, but Shakim Phillips dropped a slant pass on fourth-and-3 and Harris was stopped inches short of the first down by Adrian Moten and Joe Vellano on BC's final possession to allow the Terps, who snapped a 10-game road losing streak, to run out the clock.
BC, which dropped its fifth-straight contest, lost three defensive starters to injuries, including one that appeared to be serious. Safety Wes Davis remained on the turf for about 10 minutes before being strapped to a backboard and wheeled to a waiting ambulance; the school said he had "full movement" but was taken to a hospital for observation.
Defensive lineman Alex Albright left the game with an ankle in the first quarter, and cornerback DeLeon Gause hurt his right knee.
Rettig completed 18 of 33 passes and BC linebacker Luke Kuechly, the nation's leading tackler, had a game-high 15 stops. Tate and Alex Wujciak each had eight stops to lead the Maryland tackle chart.
Terrapin Replay: Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic is scheduled to show a replay of the ESPN3.com webcast at 7:30 p.m. Sunday and 11:30 a.m. Tuesday. The Ralph Friedgen TV Show airs at 7 p.m. Sunday.
Material from The Associated Press contributed to this story.