Terps turn up heat in first half, win again

Hills ef­fec­tive again as Durkin era be­gins with two con­sec­u­tive vic­to­ries

Baltimore Sun - - SPORTS - By Don Markus

MI­AMI — The 90-de­gree game-time tem­per­a­ture and ac­com­pa­ny­ing hu­mid­ity Fri­day night at Ocean Bank Field were no prob­lem for a Mary­land foot­ball team that had spent much of its pre­sea­son camp prac­tic­ing un­der a sear­ing mid­day sun in Col­lege Park. Nor was Flor­ida In­ter­na­tional a prob­lem. Af­ter watch­ing fel­low Big Ten Con­fer­ence mem­ber In­di­ana strug­gle here against the Pan­thers for three quar­ters in the sea­son opener a week ago, the Terps wanted to make sure not to give the Con­fer­ence USA team any hope. They didn’t. With se­nior quar­ter­back Perry Hills pick­ing up where he left off in the first half last Satur­day against Howard, the Terps built a 31-7 half­time lead and cruised to a 41-14 win, the sec­ond straight lop­sided vic­tory for new coach DJ Durkin.

Hills started slowly, then picked it up when he started play­ing catch with sopho­more re­ceiver D.J. Moore. The two com­bined for five passes, in­clud­ing a 21-yard flea flicker from Moore to Hills and a more con­ven­tional 45-yard touch­down pass to Moore, for 119 yards in the first half alone.

Play­ing a lit­tle less than three quar­ters, Hills fin­ished 13-for-18 for 210 yards and Next Satur­day, 7 p.m. TV: CBS Sports Net­work Ra­dio: 105.7 FM, 980 AM

three touch­downs. Moore, who turned a short pass from Hills into a 40-yard touch­down in the sec­ond half, fin­ished with a ca­reer-high 147 yards re­ceiv­ing on six catches.

The Mary­land de­fense also scored its first touch­down of the sea­son, on a first-quar­ter in­ter­cep­tion re­turn by ju­nior line­backer Jer­maine Carter.

On the game’s open­ing pos­ses­sion, FIU (0-2) drove from its 23-yard line to the Mary­land 39, where the Terps (2-0) stiff­ened. Af­ter forc­ing a fourth-and-3 by fi­nally get­ting pres­sure on Pan­thers quar­ter­back Alex McGough, ju­nior line­backer Shane Cock­er­ille (Gil­man) tack­led run­ning back Alex Gard­ner for a loss.

On Mary­land’s open­ing pos­ses­sion, the Terps drove from their 43 to the FIU 5. But Mary­land’s drive stalled af­ter grad­u­ate trans­fer run­ning back Trey Ed­munds was stuffed for a 4-yard loss. Ju­nior Adam Greene (Broadneck) kicked a 28-yard field goal to cap the drive.

Af­ter Mary­land’s sec­ond pos­ses­sion went back­ward, punter Wade Lees buried the Pan­thers at their 3. On third down from the10, McGough’s pass was tipped by se­nior cor­ner­back Alvin Hill into the hands of Carter, who re­turned it 10 yards for a touch­down.

The fourth in­ter­cep­tion by McGough this sea­son, and third re­turned for a touch­down, was costly for the se­nior quar­ter­back, who was in­jured try­ing to make the tackle. He was re­placed by red­shirt fresh­man Mau­rice Alexan­der.

It didn’t seem to make a dif­fer­ence, as the Pan­thers kept self-de­struc­t­ing with penal­ties on of­fense. Mary­land kept tak­ing ad­van­tage. This time, it was fresh­man run­ning back Lorenzo Har­ri­son break­ing off a 40-yard run for a touch­down to help give the Terps a17-0 lead early in the sec­ond quar­ter.

Just when it ap­peared Mary­land would have an­other easy game, FIU fans fi­nally got some­thing to cheer as Gard­ner took a 55-yard carry down to the Terps 3-yard line. He scored on the next play to cut Mary­land’s lead to 17-7 with 9:21 left in the first half.

FIU’s come­back didn’t last long. It took all of 84 sec­onds for the Terps to go 79 yards, all but 2 of them on passes from Hills to Moore, who got be­hind a Pan­thers de­fender for a 45-yard touch­down.

Hills and the Terps soon went right back to work, get­ting pos­ses­sion and plod­ding their way to­ward the FIU goal line. Af­ter con­vert­ing on fourth-and-2, Hills hit tight end Der­rick Hay­ward for his first ca­reer touch­down. Mary­land held a 31-7 lead with 56 sec­onds left in the first half.

The Terps started the sec­ond half as they be­gan the first, with a good drive that stalled and a short field goal by Greene, this time Mary­land fresh­man run­ning back Lorenzo Har­ri­son rushes for a 40-yard touch­down in the sec­ond quar­ter. Af­ter scor­ing 52 points against Howard last week, the Terps have 93 points in two games this sea­son un­der new coach DJ Durkin. from 28 yards. It in­creased the lead to 34-7 and boosted Durkin’s record for most points scored for a coach in his first Mary­land sea­son af­ter the 52-13 win over Howard last week­end.

In1945, in his only sea­son in Col­lege Park, the leg­endary Paul “Bear” Bryant’s Terps scored a com­bined 80 points in his first two games.

The only thing that seemed to slow the Terps in the sec­ond half was a typ­i­cal South Flor­ida squall that started mid­way through the third quar­ter. Though it lasted only a few min­utes, it helped empty the half-filled stands, ex­cept for the hearty Pan­thers march­ing band fill­ing sev­eral rows and a loud con­tin­gent of Mary­land fans who had made the trip. Quar­ter­back Perry Hills was 13-for-18 for 210 yards and three touch­downs.

ROB FOLDY/GETTY IM­AGES

DAVID SAN­TI­AGO/TNS

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