College Football: Virginia Tech 23, Maryland 13
BLACKSBURG, Va. ó Darren Evans ran for a school-record 253 yards and a touchdown and Virginia Tech continued its Thursday night mastery, beating No. 23 Maryland 23-13 to stay in the thick of a wide-open ACC.
The Hokies (6-3, 3-2) improved to 15-3 on Thursday night and ended a two-game losing streak while remaining one of five teams in the ACC’s Coastal Division with two conference losses. The Hokies, Virginia and North Carolina are a half-game behind Georgia Tech.
Maryland (6-3, 3-2) came into the game as the only ACC team with one league loss, but dropped into a tie for the Atlantic Division lead.
Evans, who ripped off runs of 50 and 45 yards, had 32 carries and broke the record of 243 yards set by Mike Imoh in 2004.
His effort was a much-needed breakout for an offense that has struggled all season. It was especially helpful to Sean Glennon, who started at quarterback in place of Tyrod Taylor, who has a left ankle sprain.
Glennon was 14-of-20 for 120 yards and a touchdown, and Dustin Keys kicked three field goals for the Hokies, the last a 27-yarder with 7:30 left to make it a two-score game.
Until then, the Terrapins were rallying, relying on a defense to erase a 17-point deficit.
And their comeback came after an auspicious start to the second half.
On their first play from scrimmage, Orion Martin sacked Chris Turner, causing a fumble that Cordarrow Thompson recovered for the Hokies at the Maryland 18. When three plays netted just five yards, Keys kicked a 30-yard field goal to make it 20-3 after just 2:16.
Darrius Heyward-Bey, Maryland’s big-play receiver, made it interesting when he took a short slant pass on third-and-5 63 yards for a touchdown with 6:43 left in the quarter.
The Hokies forced Maryland to punt from its 44 on the next series, but Travis Baltz’s kick bounced off Virginia Tech’s Kam Chancellor and the Terps recovered at the Hokies 11.
Virginia Tech held, but Obi Egekeze’s 27-yard field goal made it 20-13.
Glennon, who lost his job after one game because of the Hokies’ weak offensive line, threw a 5-yard touchdown pass to Greg Boone to end Virginia Tech’s second series. Evans did much of the damage in the drive, carrying seven times for 49 yards, including runs of 15 and 17 yards.
The Terps, who drove to the Hokies 29 on their first series before Egekeze missed a 47-yard field goal attempt, got to the Virginia Tech 24 on their second series, with Turner’s 13-yard pass to Heyward-Bey on third-and-18 putting them in range for Egekeze’s 41-yarder.
Evans again did much of the work on the Hokies; second scoring drive. After taking over at their own 20, he broke off a career-best 50-yard run on the first play. Glennon completed a 13-yard pass to Dyrell Roberts on third-and-5 from the 14, and Evans dived in for the touchdown.