Sunday, September 23, 2018
Sports

Tar Heels rebound, Hurricanes don't to lose second straight

MIAMI GARDENS — Mitch Trubisky threw two touchdown passes, defensive end Malik Carney forced a turnover with 1:31 left to thwart Miami's last chance at a rally, and North Carolina knocked off the 16th-ranked Hurricanes 20-13 Saturday.

Ryan Switzer and Austin Proehl had scoring catches for the Tar Heels. Bug Howard had 10 catches for 156 yards. Trubisky was 33-of-46 for 299 yards.

"It's a huge bounce-back game for us, coming down on the road against a very good opponent," said Trubisky, whose team was embarrassed by Virginia Tech 34-3 last weekend while rain from Hurricane Matthew poured down.

Mark Walton rushed for 82 yards, and Joe Yearby ran for 74 and a touchdown for Miami, which lost its second straight after last weekend's 20-19 loss to Florida State. Brad Kaaya completed 16 of 31 for 224 yards for Miami, but he was hit by a blitzing Carney and lost the ball late in the game.

"We need all 11 guys doing the right thing," Kaaya said. "It starts with me."

Asked if his shoulder, which limited him in practice last week, was bothering him, Kaaya said, "No. No. No."

North Carolina took over after the fumble and ran out the clock, sealing the win when Elijah Hood rumbled 13 yards for a first down with 1:02 left — the 14th conversion in 23 third-down opportunities for the Tar Heels.

"I thought that was decisive," Miami defensive coordinator Manny Diaz said of the conversion rate.

Among Miami's first-half lowlights: Malcolm Lewis caught the opening kickoff and immediately went out of bounds at the 3-yard line, and Michael Badgley had a kick blocked for the second straight week, a field goal at the same end that his potentially tying extra point was knocked away by Florida State.

"It may not seem like it by our record," Miami coach Mark Richt said, "but I do think we're making progress."

No. 3 Clemson 24, N.C. State 17 (OT): The Wolfpack was a 33-yard field goal away at the end of regulation from quashing Clemson's perfect start. Instead, Kyle Bambard pushed the kick right and sent most of the 82,104 at Death Valley into hysterics. Given new life, the Tigers converted a fourth and 1 to keep their overtime drive going, then Deshaun Watson connected with Artavis Scott (East Lake High) on a go-ahead 10-yard touchdown pass. Clemson cornerback Marcus Edmond intercepted Ryan Finley's deep throw into the end zone to keep the Tigers undefeated at 7-0 and on track for the league title game and the College Football Playoff.

"There's something to be said for finding a way to win," Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said. "And there's something to be said for knowing how to win."

The Wolfpack's Bambard was 1-for-4 on field goals.

"At the same time, we could've stopped them one more time," North Carolina State cornerback Mike Stevens said. "It's on the whole team."

Syracuse 31 No. 17 Va. Tech 17: Eric Dungey accounted for 417 yards and two touchdowns, and host Syracuse got its first victory over a ranked opponent since 2012.

Fans stormed the field and carried off Dungey in celebration after he passed for 311 yards and ran for 106. He scored on a 1-yard sneak to give the Orange a 24-17 lead with 7:56 to go.

"You can't explain it. It's unbelievable," Syracuse coach Dino Babers said. "Any time you're trying to rebuild a program, you need that one signature win. … To get this game right now, at this time, at this moment — this is big."

Held to their lowest offensive output of the season, the Hokies tied it at 17 with 13:53 to go on Jerod Evans' 10-yard pass to Bucky Hodges and a 2-point conversion catch by Chris Cunningham, but Dungey took over after that.

Pittsburgh 45, Virginia 31: It was only one play in a game unfolding as a track meet, and it changed the game entirely. The Panthers' Jordan Whitehead, deep in coverage as host Virginia was trying to push the issue and sneak in more points before halftime, stepped in front of Kurt Benkert's pass at the Panthers' 41-yard line and never stopped running until Pittsburgh took a 35-28 lead into halftime. "It was gigantic. It was gigantic," Panthers coach Pat Narduzzi said. "We've been waiting for one of those picks in that coverage, and we finally got one." James Conner ran for 90 yards and two touchdowns, and Pittsburgh shut Virginia down in the second half.

GA. Tech 35, GA. Southern 24: Beating state rival Georgia Southern won't make Georgia Tech's season. Even so, it provided much-needed relief. Justin Thomas was the difference in the matchup of spread-option offenses, running for two touchdowns and passing for another, and host Georgia Tech ended a three-game losing streak. "It's definitely better than being on the other side," said Yellow Jackets senior center Freddie Burden.

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