Terps clinch winning season Lewis' 4 TDs pace 30-13 rout of State

November 05, 1995|By Mike Preston | Mike Preston,SUN STAFF

RALEIGH, N.C. -- In the locker room, Maryland coach Mark Duffner and offensive coordinator Dan Dorazio were being congratulated as if they were geniuses.

Maryland had frequently abandoned the run and shoot as its full-time offense and sometimes used a pro-I formation. And double tight ends. And an unbalanced line. Or a heavy jumbo package.

But despite the new looks, the Terps won with an old face as senior wide receiver Jermaine Lewis scored four touchdowns in Maryland's 30-13 rout of North Carolina State before a homecoming crowd of 45,652 yesterday at Carter-Finley Field.

Lewis called it a "career day" after he scored on a 9-yard pass, a 66-yard punt return and runs of 14 and 13 yards. But it was also a great day for Maryland (6-3 overall, 4-2 Atlantic Coast Conference), which clinched its first winning season since 1990 yesterday, and kept its bowl aspirations alive.

"It feels good, so good especially after what we've been through TC the last couple of years," said Maryland junior cornerback Andreal Johnson minutes after the game in which Maryland ended a two-game losing streak and a nine-quarter scoring drought. "But we want more.

"Next week Virginia comes to our house, and that's the bowl clincher for us if we win that game," said Johnson. 'Our primary goal has always been going to a bowl."

Peach Bowl officials were in attendance yesterday, and they had to be pleased with Maryland's performance, especially in the second half, when the Terps outscored N.C. State (2-6, 1-4), 27-3.

State, which led 10-3 at the half, had 196 yards of total offense in the first half but only 46 in the second. Maryland stymied the Wolfpack's rushing attack in the last two periods and then buried quarterback Jose Laureano with eight sacks. Laureano, a redshirt freshman, was filling in for senior Terry Harvey, who was out with a sprained neck.

Meanwhile, Maryland's offense was just as efficient as the defense, with senior quarterback Scott Milanovich, starting his third game this season, completing 20 of 24 passes for 209 yards.

After the game, Milanovich walked off the field with his usual swagger and then declined to speak with reporters. But even though he had a big day against the conference's second-worst defense, Lewis had the biggest.

"I just felt good out there," said Lewis, the 5-foot-8, 172-pound speedster from Lanham. "I was in a certain rhythm when I had the ball. I was in a zone."

Actually, Lewis was in the backfield, slot and wide receiver positions. And he returned punts, too. Lewis' first touchdown was a 9-yard reception on a fade pattern in the left corner of the end zone which tied the score at 10-10 with 11:49 left in the third quarter.

Then, on State's next possession, Lewis took a punt at his 34, headed right, then back to the left, picked up a block at midfield and cut back right. See ya. Touchdown. Maryland 17, N.C. State 10 with 5:33 left in the third quarter.

It was Lewis who scored on a 14-yard run off a double reverse with 8:58 left in the game, and Lewis who scored again as the I-back on a 13-yard pitch around right end with 57 seconds remaining.

"Maryland tried to get the ball in his hand as many times as possible, and that was probably the turning point of the game," said Wolfpack coach Mike O'Cain. "He does a good job in every ballgame, and he is hard to contain or defend because they put him in so many different places."

Lewis had 11 receptions for 106 yards. He rushed six times for 51 and returned three punts for 74.

"Coach Duffner put me in as running back this week," said Lewis. "At first it seemed a little awkward, but I got used to it. I think it's all right. You're going to see more of it."

Duffner had to make some kind of offensive changes. The two consecutive shutouts to Clemson and Louisville were Maryland's first since 1969, and the scoring drought was the school's worst in 28 years.

N.C. State was a "must win" if Duffner did not want renewed questions about his job security.

Duffner revamped his offense just enough to keep N.C. State off balance and give his team a mental edge. He was so desperate that he moved a nose guard/linebacker, Mario Chavez, to starting fullback last week after three others failed.

"I'm very pleased to win one on the road and to bring winning football back to Maryland," said Duffner, in his fourth year at Maryland. "I think our coaching staff and players did a very good job of preparation this week."

Dorazio said: "We put a lot of this stuff in Tuesday. It gave us better numbers in matching up for the run. Our kids needed a change, they needed a lift, something they thought would give them more of a chance."

Next for Maryland

Opponent: No. 24 Virginia

Date: Saturday, 1:30 p.m.

Site: Byrd Stadium, College Park

Record: 7-3

3' Thursday: Beat Florida State, 33-28

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