Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Sports

Late punt return TD lifts UNC

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — Gio Bernard fielded the punt, saw nothing but blue jerseys to his right and headed that direction with the final seconds ticking away. He didn't stop until he reached the end zone — and halted North Carolina's five-year losing streak to its biggest rival.

Bernard returned a punt 74 yards for the go-ahead touchdown with 13 seconds left Saturday to give the Tar Heels a 43-35 win against N.C. State.

"I still can't believe it," Bernard said. "I'm still shaking right now."

North Carolina hadn't beaten the Wolfpack since 2006, one year before Tom O'Brien took over in Raleigh. It still hasn't lost six straight in the series that began in 1894.

"This wasn't just a regular win," senior defensive tackle Sylvester Williams said. "This wasn't us going out and playing against any other school. This was a team we wanted to beat and we've been harping on beating all year."

Mike Glennon threw for 467 yards and five touchdowns for the Wolfpack, which led 35-25 after his 55-yard pass to Bryan Underwood with 39 seconds left in the third. The Tar Heels tied it on Casey Barth's 34-yard field goal with 1:24 left. Then they forced a three-and-out.

"I think I've never heard it that quiet (in the locker room) in my five years here," said Wolfpack cornerback C.J. Wilson, whose team had won two straight, including an upset of Florida State. "It hurts. People are upset."

BC 20, Maryland 17: Chase Rettig hit Johnathan Coleman for a 14-yard touchdown with 52 seconds left to lift the host Eagles. Boston College's only other win this season came against I-AA Maine. "It's a confirmation to me of what we believe in and what those kids have in them," coach Frank Spaziani said. "They're young, and they need to have (a win) like that." Caleb Rowe, a freshman playing because of injuries to Maryland's three other quarterbacks, rallied it from down 13-0 and hit Stefon Diggs for a 66-yard score midway through the fourth to give it the lead. "We're down 13-nothing, and the kids really could have packed it in and mailed it in," coach Randy Edsall said. "But they didn't."

BYU 41, Ga. Tech 17: Jamaal Williams scored four touchdowns for the visiting Cougars. The Yellow Jackets ran for 117 yards, 223 below their season average, and failed to score an offensive touchdown for the first time since 2008. "We worked overtime (during practice)," BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall said of facing Tech's triple-option offense. "I give our players credit for the extra time and energy they spent to really be assignment-sound. I'm not sure I've ever been more proud of a defensive group." Williams' 39-yard touchdown catch put BYU up 38-17. Said Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson: "We flat out got our tails whipped."

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