Florida State defeats Maryland 29-26 on late scoreNov 21, 2009 - 10:09 PM By BRENT KALLESTAD Associated Press Writer
TALLAHASSEE, Fla.(AP) -- Greg Reid has made several big plays for Florida State this season, but none more important than Saturday.
The Seminoles (6-5, 4-4 ACC) were only a couple minutes away from a devastating loss to Maryland when the freshman darted 48 yards with a punt return. That set up Lonnie Pryor's 3-yard run with 32 seconds left that gave Florida State the win it needed to become bowl eligible for the 28th straight year.
"I told (quarterback) EJ (Manuel) before I would set him up for good field position and all you've got to do is finish the game," Reid said. "Everything worked out."
Reid was lucky to get his hands on the ball - Maryland coach Ralph Friedgen wanted the kick to sail out of bounds.
"The kid is a heckuva returner," Friedgen said. "Regardless, we have to go down there and cover."
Pryor's go-ahead score was his second touchdown of the game.
"I never thought as a freshman I would get a winning touchdown," said Pryor, who also scored on a 50-yard run on a pitch from Manuel in the second quarter. "I ran scared pretty much."
Maryland (2-9, 1-6) suffered its sixth straight loss.
"You can't let people get away," Friedgen said. "All we had to do was take care of business."
Maryland's Davin Meggett scored his second touchdown on a 9-yard run with 4:29 remaining that gave the Terrapins a 26-22 lead.
"We had a chance to finish the game," Maryland linebacker Alex Wujciak said.
Maryland's defense intercepted Manuel three times, the last one by Cameron Chism with 2:57 left that seemed to shut the door on the Seminoles.
But the Terrapins were unable to run out the clock and Reid, the ACC's leading punt returner, gave the Seminoles some momentum with his return to set up the winning drive.
"We've got to make two first downs in that situation," Friedgen said. "We couldn't do it."
Reid returned three punts for 88 yards and now has 350 yards on 19 returns going into next week's game at top-ranked Florida.
Manuel, who was making his first start at home since taking over for the injured Christian Ponder, completed 17-of-27 passes for 206 yards. He ran for 49, including gains of 15 and 20 yards on the final drive.
Maryland took its first lead at 19-14 on a 20-yard touchdown pass from Jamarr Robinson to Adrian Cannon early in the fourth quarter, but Florida State regained the lead when Bert Reed scored on a 42-yard end around.
The game turned around dramatically just before halftime when Wujciak rambled 82 yards with Manuel's interception to set up a 1-yard touchdown run by Meggett as the Terrapins pulled within 14-13 seconds before the break.
Wujciak stepped in front of Florida State's Beau Reliford at the Maryland 11 and ended up at the Florida State 7.
Robinson, a sophomore making his second start, completed 20 of 27 passes for 214 yards and was not intercepted.
"He was poised, he made very good decisions," Friedgen said. "I was very impressed."
Florida State finished its home season with a 3-3 record and for the second straight game there were thousands of empty seats despite pregame activities honoring departing senior players and longtime defensive coordinator Mickey Andrews.
The 68-year-old Andrews was given a new garnet Ford crew cab pickup from his former players. He is retiring at the end of the season after 26 years at Florida State.
There was also a moment of silence in the pressbox before kickoff in memory of veteran Tallahassee Democrat sports writer Steve Ellis, who died Thursday at age 54 nine days after suffering a heart attack. Ellis had covered the Seminoles since 1990 for the newspaper.
- NCAAF FINAL
1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
--- --- --- --- -----
MARYLAND 0 13 0 13 26
FLORIDAST 7 7 0 15 29 FINAL
1ST QUARTER: FLORIDA ST - TD, JERMAINE THOMAS 1 YD RUN
(DUSTIN HOPKINS KICK), 10:21.
2ND QUARTER: MARYLAND - FG, NICK FERRARA 44 YD, 5:34.
FLORIDA ST - TD, LONNIE PRYOR 54
Nov 21 3:11 PM
FLORIDAST 29 0:00 LEFT, 4TH QTR
Nov 21 3:11 PM
FLORIDAST 29 0:32 LEFT, 4TH QTR
Maryland 26, Florida State 29 4th - 0:32Nov 21 3:05 PM
FLORIDAST 22 4:29 LEFT, 4TH QTR
Maryland 26, Florida State 22 4th - 4:29Nov 21 2:48 PM
FLORIDAST 22 10:30 LEFT, 4TH QTR
Maryland 19, Florida State 22 4th - 10:30Nov 21 2:35 PM
ADRIAN CANNON 20 YD PASS FROM JAMARR ROBINSON
(TWO-POINT PASS CONVERSION FAILED)
FLORIDAST 14 12:40 LEFT, 4TH QTR
Maryland 19, Florida State 14 4th - 12:40Nov 21 2:28 PM
FLORIDAST 14 0:00 LEFT, 3RD QTR
Nov 21 2:21 PM
FLORIDAST 14 0:00 LEFT, 2ND QTR
Nov 21 1:25 PM
FLORIDAST 14 0:06 LEFT, 2ND QTR
Maryland 13, Florida State 14 2nd - 0:06Nov 21 1:22 PM
FLORIDAST 14 4:28 LEFT, 2ND QTR
Maryland 6, Florida State 14 2nd - 4:28Nov 21 1:10 PM
FLORIDAST 14 8:35 LEFT, 2ND QTR
Maryland 3, Florida State 14 2nd - 8:35Nov 21 1:01 PM
FLORIDAST 7 9:26 LEFT, 2ND QTR
Maryland 3, Florida State 7 2nd - 9:26Nov 21 12:57 PM
FLORIDAST 7 0:00 LEFT, 1ST QTR
Nov 21 12:45 PM
FLORIDAST 7 4:39 LEFT, 1ST QTR
Maryland 0, Florida State 7 1st - 4:39Nov 21 12:37 PM
FLORIDAST 6 4:39 LEFT, 1ST QTR
Maryland 0, Florida State 6 1st - 4:39Nov 21 12:35 PM
- Clemson offense set to step forward, led by Deshaun Watson May 4
- FSU student reps: No headdresses at Seminoles games May 3
- Offense a priority this spring for ACC's Atlantic Division Apr 25
- Durkin takes the offensive in 1st spring with Maryland Apr 16
- Is a revenue gap keeping top coaches away from G5 schools? Apr 15
- Big Ten East loses top stars, but new ones are set to emerge Apr 14
- Florida State's young quarterbacks shine during spring game Apr 9
- Road trip: Florida State playing spring game in Orlando Apr 8
- Line change: FSU's Leonard switches from defense to offense Apr 7
- Judge rules NCAA must go to trial in football death Apr 7
- Florida State RB Dalvin Cook has shoulder surgery Apr 6
- Maryland hires Andy Buh as its next defensive coordinator Apr 5