- The Washington Times - Sunday, September 9, 2001

MARYLAND 50, E. MICHIGAN 3

Maryland coach Ralph Friedgen preached to his team all week long not to overlook Eastern Michigan despite the Terrapins being a prohibitive favorite against one of the doormats in Division I college football.

Apparently, his players listened.

The Terps posted their biggest victory in five seasons with a 50-3 demolition of the Eagles last night before 42,105 at Byrd Stadium. Tailback Bruce Perry rushed for 133 yards and three touchdowns as Maryland posted its second straight win. Quarterback Shaun Hill bounced back from a sub-par game last week as the Terps chewed up the Eagles' secondary with their mid-range passing game.

And the defense put on another spectacular performance, registering a shutout for more than three quarters and ultimately allowing only a fourth-quarter field goal when most starters were long out of the game.

"We showed up," said linebacker E.J. Henderson, who led the team with eight tackles. "We put points on the board on offense. We did what we were supposed to do. We spanked them."

The defense held Eastern Michigan to 124 yards, the fewest Maryland has allowed since limiting Virginia to 90 in 1989. The 47-point margin was Maryland's biggest since a 52-0 drubbing of Wake Forest in 1996, when Mark Duffner coached the Terps.

Hill completed 15 of 21 passes for 187 yards and a touchdown and ran for a touchdown. Perry totaled his second 100-yard performance and scored his first career touchdown. The Terps scored on their first two possessions in the second half for a 41-0 edge on the hapless Eagles (1-1).

Maryland continued to look sharp in Friedgen's first season and will have an excellent chance to win its third in a row when West Virginia (1-1) visits Byrd on Saturday. The Terps started the year with a convincing 23-7 win over North Carolina.

"I couldn't tell the difference between last week against North Carolina and this week against Eastern Michigan," offensive guard Todd Wike said. "The focus was the same."

Maryland scored touchdowns on its first two possessions to set the tone and rolled from there. Perry closed the opening drive with an 8-yard run up the middle on the first of two consecutive 62-yard marches. The key play was a 17-yard completion on a slant pattern to Daryl Whitmer on a third-and-7.

After the Eagles went three-and-out, Marc Riley finished the Terps' next drive with a 1-yard run for a 13-0 advantage.

Maryland receiver Guilian Gary made a nifty over-the-shoulder catch in the end zone midway through the second quarter for a 19-yard touchdown to make it 19-0. Gary finished with six catches for 76 yards as Maryland's offense, particularly the passing game, was much more efficient than last week.

"The kids played with very good intensity," Friedgen said. "They played for a full 60 minutes, which is hard to do when you have a lead like that."

Perry's 31-yard run ended Maryland's first drive of the second half, and Hill's 4-yard run closed Maryland's next drive to make it 41-0 with 8:14 left in the third quarter.

"That doesn't happen too often," Perry said of his feeling while looking up at a scoreboard reading 50-3 at the finish. "We are starting to get accustomed to winning."

Notes The only significant downside for Maryland was in the kicking game. Freshman Nick Novak missed field goal tries from 28 and 40 yards and is now 0-for-4 for the season. Back-up Vedad Siljkovic made a 44-field goal to make it 44-0 early in the fourth quarter, and Friedgen said he will reopen the job this week… .

The Terps failed to convert their first extra-point try when holder Brooks Bernard couldn't cleanly handle the snap, and picked up the ball trying to roll out… . True freshman Jason Crawford scored final touchdown on a 2-yard run.


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