Defense keeps BC in race

Published November 19, 2006

BOSTON - Jolonn Dunbar scored on two fumble recoveries before No. 20 Boston College's offense took the field in a 38-16 victory over No. 21 Maryland on Saturday.

Both teams entered with hopes of reaching the conference title game. And thanks to Wake Forest's loss to Virginia Tech, both still can do so.

BC must beat Miami on Thursday and hope Wake loses to Maryland on Saturday. Wake holds the tiebreaker because of its 21-14 win on Nov. 4.

"I'm only thinking about going to Miami and winning," Eagles coach Tom O'Brien said.

The Terps, whose five-game win streak ended, must beat Wake and hope BC loses.

"You can't make the mistakes we did and expect to win the game," coach Ralph Friedgen said. "I'm really disheartened because I thought we'd understand the importance."

BC took a 14-0 lead 3:18 in on Dunbar's returns of 14 and 38 yards. On the second play from scrimmage, Danny Oquendo took a pitchout to the left from Sam Hollenbach and was blasted by Larry Anam. Hollenbach slid for the ball, but it squirted away. Dunbar scooped it up for the touchdown 42 seconds in.

"I went to grab (the pitch)," Oquendo said. "And when it was on my fingertips, his head was in my chest."

On the fifth play of the next series, Hollenbach pitched to the other side. Lance Ball fumbled, and Dunbar was there again.

"I couldn't believe it happened again," Dunbar said. "I was kind of hoping for a third."

BC quarterback Matt Ryan took his first snap with 6:36 left in the first quarter and threw a 21-yard completion to Tony Gonzalez on his first play. That series ended with a missed 42-yard field goal by Steve Aponavicius.

But later, Ryan hit Gonzalez for a 34-yard score and Brandon Robinson for a 17-yarder to make it 28-3. On those two series, Ryan completed 9 of 12 passes for 140 yards.

No. 19 Va. Tech 27, No. 14 Wake Forest 6

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Sean Glennon threw two long touchdowns in the Hokies' fifth consecutive win.

But Tech lost star tailback Branden Ore in the first quarter. Ore, who entered averaging an ACC-high 109 yards, was hurt when he was tackled by Josh Gattis and his left leg folded awkwardly underneath him.

The team said Ore will be re-evaluated today. Kenny Lewis, his replacement, ran for 74 yards.

On Virginia Tech's first series, Glennon connected with Eddie Royal, who bounced off a hit from Kevin Patterson and raced in for a 49-yard touchdown. On its first series of the second half, Glennon tossed a high pass to Josh Morgan, who outjumped Riley Swanson and broke free from Gattis for a 53-yard score and a 14-3 lead.

The Hokies defense sealed it with 3:01 left in the third. Aaron Rouse jarred the ball loose from Kevin Harris on a screen pass, and Xavier Adibi returned the fumble 35 yards for a 24-6 lead.

No. 18 Ga. Tech 49, Duke 21

ATLANTA - Reggie Ball threw three second-quarter touchdowns then rested in the second half with many of the starters for the Jackets, who previously clinched a spot in the title game.

Tech's Tashard Choice gained 16 and 46 yards on his first two runs. He capped the drive with a 3-yard score and 7-0 lead.

Calvin Johnson's 46-yard catch set up his 10-yard touchdown six seconds into the second quarter. Ball's second touchdown, a 37-yarder with 5:51 left, was deflected by cornerback Deonto McCormick and caught by James Johnson.

One player later, Blue Devils quarterback Thaddeus Lewis lost a fumble at the 26. And three plays after that, Calvin Johnson outjumped Talley for a 19-yard score and 28-0 lead.

NORTH CAROLINA 23, N.C. STATE 9: Ronnie McGill rushed for 101 yards and a touchdown for the Heels in fired coach John Bunting's final home game. On North Carolina's second series, McGill rushed nine times for 47 yards, capped by a 1-yard score.

John Deraney's 41-yard field goal 4:48 into the fourth cut the Wolfpack's deficit to 16-9. But the Heels forced three turnovers from there. Quinton Person's interception near midfield came with 6:11 left.

On fourth and 7 from its 15, N.C. State went for it. But quarterback Daniel Evans was hit at the 2 by Melik Brown, and Brian Rackley ran it in for the clinching touchdown.

Kareen Taylor intercepted Evans at the Tar Heels 2 with 52 seconds left.