After losing eight games in a row, Maryland football ended its season on a high note, beating Rutgers 46-41 Saturday to grab its first conference win of the year in its last game.
The Terps took their first lead of the game on Kenneth Goins' 42-yard touchdown run with nine minutes left in the game. After Rutgers took the lead back on a field goal, Brandon Ross broke an 80-yard run to give the Terps the lead permanently. The Terps stuffed Rutgers running back Robert Martin on fourth down with 85 seconds left to clinch the victory.
The Scarlet Knights led by as much as 24-3 in the second quarter, but only managed 10 points in the second half. The Terps finish the season with a 3-9 record, and Mike Locksley earned his first (and probably only) win as the team's interim head coach.
Brandon Ross led the way for the Terps with 173 yards rushing, his second straight outstanding performance.
Freshman running back Ty Johnson provided a glimpse into the future for the Terrapins, taking a perfectly-timed pitch from Rowe 43 yards into the end zone in the second quarter.
He later took a handoff 44 yards for a touchdown in the second half. Those touchdowns were Johnson's only two rushes.
After an ineffective start by Perry Hills, Mike Locksley put Caleb Rowe under center in the second quarter. Down 17-0, Rowe was able to immediately move the ball against Rutgers' poor pass defense, driving the Terps down the field to get on the scoreboard twice to make it 17-10. He finished 16 for 32 with 239 yards on the day, and also had a solid game on the ground, rushing for 98 yards on 7 carries.
With Will Likely out nursing an injury, Rutgers wideout Leonte Carroo torched the Maryland defense to the tune of 183 yards on 7 catches, with 1 touchdown. He was Rutgers' leading receiver, accounting for over half of quarterback Chris Laviano's passing yards on the day.
Rutgers outpaced Maryland at the game's beginning. The Scarlet Knights scored on five of their six possessions in the first half, sprinting out to a 31-13 lead. The Terps could have had another touchdown, but this third-down D.J. Moore touchdown catch was reversed.
Locksley elected to bring in Adam Greene to kick a field goal with 30 seconds left in the half rather than go for it on fourth down.
After Ross ran one in at the beginning of the second half to narrow the score to 31-20, Johnson's second touchdown of the day made it 31-27. The teams traded touchdowns before Maryland pulled away and hung on at the end.
Three things to know
1. Maryland won. Leading up to this game, players talked about how much a win would mean to them personally, and to the program. At the end of the game, you could see how happy they were to end their season on a high note.
2. It's basketball season. This season has been an absolute nightmare for Maryland, and now the Terps can rest easy knowing they don't have to play next weekend. Maryland has the No. 2 men's basketball team in the country, in case you hadn't heard. Go watch that team as it plays Cleveland State at Xfinity Center Saturday night at 7:30.
3. The coaching search is now (and already was) Maryland's biggest focus. The first domino has already fallen, as Memphis head coach Justin Fuente reportedly signed on to be Frank Beamer's replacement at Virginia Tech. Maryland will sign a new coach sooner rather than later, and you should expect to hear lots of wild rumors over the next few days.