By: Daniel Chavkin
For the second straight week, Maryland’s starters didn’t finish the game as the Terrapins blew out Florida International 41-14.
After the running backs stole the show last week, the passing game was the story Friday night. Specifically, it was DJ Moore’s time to shine. The sophomore finished with 147 receiving yards and two touchdowns. He even completed a pass too for 21 yards on a reverse trick play.
But, Moore wouldn’t have had a big game without his veteran quarterback. Perry Hills completed the day with 210 passing yards and three touchdowns, along with eight rushes for 52 yards and one catch for 21 yards. Besides throwing two to Moore, Hills threw a touchdown to Derrick Hayward for Hayward’s only catch of the day.
The Terrapins defense began the game on a high note, turning FIU over on downs during their first drive, FIU’s first of three failed fourth down conversions. Later in the first quarter, linebacker Jermaine Carter Jr. intercepted junior FIU quarterback Alex McGough and took it back for Maryland’s first touchdown. McGough was also injured on the play, forcing freshman Maurice Alexander into action for the Panthers for the rest of the game.
For the running game, Trey Edmunds led the team with 78 yards, and Lorenzo Harrison was second with 64 yards. Harrison also broke free for a 40 yard touchdown, his second straight week with a score. Edmunds, Harrison, Hills, and Ty Johnson each tallied eight carries on the day, as nine different Terrapins registered a carry.
If there is one thing for DJ Durkin’s group to improve upon, it is their run defense. The Panthers rushed for a total of 202 yards, 109 coming from junior running back Alex Gardner, including 55 on one play.
Additionally, Tyrrell Pigrome showed his inexperience after taking over for Perry Hills late in the third quarter. The freshman quarterback finished the day with only one completion for seven yards and three carries for a negative eight yards. He was unable to lead Maryland to a scoring drive in his time as the signal caller.
The Terrapins return to Florida next Saturday night, this time to face Central Florida.