- NYT’s David Brooks: Obama has ‘manhood problem’ in Middle East
- Ted Cruz thanks Obama for denying visas to terrorists
- Survivors recall chaos, fear in Everest avalanche
- General Mills apologizes for ‘right to sue’ confusion, reverses policy
- Dealer wanted in U.S. for art fraud nabbed in Spain
- Easter morning delivery for space station
- Boxer Rubin ‘Hurricane’ Carter dies at 76
- Probe could complicate Rick Perry’s prospects
- Ukraine, Russia trade blame for eastern shootout
- Obamas head to church on Easter morning
Maryland edges William & Mary 7-6 in season opener
There are no artistry points in football, a reality Maryland was no doubt grateful for Saturday.
There was another reason for the Terrapins to give thanks. After nearly three hours of generally unsightly offense, injury-depleted Maryland departed Byrd Stadium with a 7-6 victory over William & Mary.
It is the sort of result that rarely results in hosannas. And, really, there couldn’t help but be an overbearing sense of mutually assured unsightliness as the Terps committed four turnovers and the Tribe turned to its backup quarterback midway through the second quarter after starter Brent Caprio left with a shoulder injury.
It was also an ultimately pleasant development for a program with little to savor over the last 20 months. Saturday marked the end of a seven-game losing streak.
“The biggest thing that I believe the team is going to take out of this is just the fact is it’s a win,” linebacker Demetrius Hartsfield said. “We haven’t won since last [October]. It’s just a good feeling to win. Even though it’s not the way you want to win, it’s still a win.”
There was no certainty about the outcome until the final 10 minutes. It took that long for Maryland to finally reach the end zone, tailback Justus Pickett’s six-yard dart and freshman Brad Craddock’s extra point the lone scoring for Maryland.
It was one of only two Maryland drives to last beyond five plays. Between three Perry Hills interceptions and an Albert Reid lost fumble, it came as little surprise the Terps required a dozen true freshmen to survive the game.
“I don’t think you ever diminish anything when you win,” coach Randy Edsall said. “There’s plenty of things we can do to get better and we will, but I think all these young kids have grown up and they’ll be better as we continue to go.”
Maryland (and Hills especially) will need to in a hurry.
Hills, only the third true freshman quarterback to start for Maryland, was 16 of 24 for 145 yards in his debut, sticking mostly to short- and medium-length passes as the Terps tried to keep things manageable.
He also was intercepted three times, looking very much like a quarterback who ascended to a starting job less than three weeks ago.
“Whenever I was out there and wasn’t really overwhelmed, wasn’t nervous,” said Hills, who became the starter after C.J. Brown tore a ligament in his right knee. “Just a couple silly mistakes I shouldn’t have made. That won’t happen again.”
The scuffling offense unnerved some in the crowd of 31,321, the smallest for a Maryland season opener since 1997. A smattering of boos fell down on the Terps as halftime arrived, and it seemed possible Maryland would follow up a 2-10 season with an even more ignominious development.
Instead, the Terps stitched together one strong drive in the fourth quarter, finally scoring two plays after senior Kevin Dorsey converted a third-down reception after shaking a would-be tackler and gaining 22 yards thanks to a Bennett Fulper block.
“It was definitely a relief,” Dorsey said. “It’s the kind of relief where you’re saying to yourself ‘About time.’ At the same time, it’s something we know we’re capable of doing.”
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Patrick Stevens has covered Maryland and other Mid-Atlantic college sports for more than a decade. You can reach him at email@example.com.
- George Mason's defense dissipates in 84-74 loss to Northeastern
- Maryland's Pe'Shon Howard willing to let others put ball in the basket
- At 7-5, George Mason looks on the bright side entering CAA play
- Terps beat IUPUI, set for ACC after final tuneup
- Maryland's Jake Layman shows signs of progress in freshman season
Latest Blog Entries
Women losing coverage under Obamacare, too
- Former Ranger breaks silence on Pat Tillman death: I may have killed him
- Scalia to students on high taxes: At a certain point, 'perhaps you should revolt'
- Special Forces' suicide rates hit record levels casualties of 'hard combat'
- USAID documents cite Hillary Clinton in chaos of Afghan aid
- Tactical advantage: Russian military shows off impressive new gear
- Feds approve powdered alcohol; 'Palcohol' available later this year
- U.S. Navy to turn seawater into jet fuel
- Inside China: Marine's comment on islands draws sharp Chinese response
- Army goes to war with National Guard, seizes Apache attack helicopters
- Supreme Court weighs appeal to concealed-carry gun laws
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.