- The Washington Times - Sunday, November 23, 2008

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. | For a while, the only touchdowns produced by Dominique Davis wound up being scored by Wake Forest’s defense. Then, with time running out, Boston College’s backup quarterback somehow got comfortable enough to pull out a critical victory.

Davis sneaked 1 yard for a touchdown with 1:12 remaining to lead BC past the Demon Deacons 24-21 on Saturday night and keep his team’s ACC title hopes alive.

After taking over for the injured Chris Crane in the second quarter, Davis was 13-for-23 for 103 yards. Two of his fumbles were returned for Wake Forest touchdowns.

“That stuff happens, and you rebound from it - it’s like a golf shot,” receiver Brandon Robinson said. “You have a bad golf shot, you forget about it, and you move on to the next one.”

Davis made enough key throws on the decisive nine-play, 70-yard drive in the final five minutes to help the Eagles (8-3, 4-3) win in Winston-Salem for the first time.

BC’s previous seven drives in the second half netted 13 total yards and one first down.

“We said, ‘This is the last chance,’” Robinson said. “We hold our cards right now in our hands. If we go down and score, we’re still on a mission to go to the ACC championship. It was all or none, and we needed to put all our chips in that basket on that drive. And we did, and we came away with it.”

Davis hit Rich Gunnell for 36 yards on third-and-13 and found Robinson for 21 yards to the 1, then powered into the end zone on the next play to make it 22-21. Montel Harris ran for the two-point conversion.

“That last drive was a sense-of-urgency drive,” Davis said. “I had to thread the needle.”

Riley Skinner led Wake Forest to the BC 39 in the final minute, but his deep heave to Ben Wooster on fourth-and-5 was broken up by safety Wes Davis with 29 seconds left.

“You feel like if you can get around the 30-yard line, you can kick a field goal,” Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe said. “We were just too far out.”

Skinner finished 14-for-28 for 126 yards for the Demon Deacons (6-5, 4-4). He was intercepted twice by Mark Herzlich and threw a 1-yard touchdown pass to Rich Belton one play after Gelo Smith blocked a punt deep in BC territory. Kevin Patterson and Kyle Wilber returned fumbles for touchdowns that ultimately didn’t rattle BC’s redshirt freshman quarterback.

Herzlich returned one of those picks for a touchdown and set up a field goal with the other, and Steve Aponavicius kicked field goals of 32, 30 and 30 yards.

Boston College lost Crane after he broke his collarbone while being tackled on a second-quarter scramble, coach Jeff Jagodzinski said. Crane is one of only three ACC quarterbacks to have started every game for his team this season, though that surely will change next week in College Park, Md.

“I was real shocked, I was overwhelmed. I wasn’t expecting that,” Davis said. “But as a backup quarterback, you’ve got to expect the worst. … As soon as I got used to it, the game got a little shower, so I got a lot better.”

But not before Wake Forest’s defense - which last year was the nation’s best at turning turnovers into touchdowns - generated some points in the final minutes of the first half.

Smith knocked the ball loose from Davis, and Patterson plucked it out of the air and brought it back 15 yards for his second defensive touchdown of the season to pull the Demon Deacons within 13-7.

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