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Ryan, running game lead Boston College past Duke

Nov 12, 2006 - 5:26 AM CHESTNUT HILL, Massachusetts (Ticker) -- Matt Ryan and Boston College did not take Duke too lightly.

Ryan passed for 219 yards and two touchdowns as the Eagles posted a 28-7 Atlantic Coast Conference victory over the winless Blue Devils to remain in the running for a spot in the league title game.

L.V. Whitworth rushed for 118 yards on 13 carries and Andre Callender gained 105 on 15 for Boston College (8-2, 4-2 ACC Atlantic), which rebounded from a disappointing 21-14 loss at Wake Forest.

"We ran the ball well tonight and that was encouraging to see," Ryan said. "I think, especially with as much pressure as Duke was bringing, it's encouraging to see the offensive line was picking it up and that our running backs were really making great cuts and running the ball really hard. They were finishing runs tonight and it was a lot of fun to watch."

"It really said a lot to have both of us go over 100, that the (offensive) line wasn't happy with last week's performance," Whitworth said. "We're known as 'O-Line U' and they didn't want the tradition to end with them."

Ryan set career highs last week by completing 40-of-57 for 407 yards, but he also threw a pair of interceptions. On Saturday, he went 23-of-37 with just one pick.

The Eagles, who host first-place Maryland next week, were limited to 28 yards on the ground last week but collected 241 on 42 carries this time as they outgained the Blue Devils, 501-301.

"One thing about taking a lot of chances on defense, which they (Duke) do, they get burned sometimes, Eagles coach Tom O'Brien said. "But if you execute well enough, you're going to get them and we were able to get a lot of big runs because of the chances they took trying to stop the run, so it was good to see that."

"Today couldn't come fast enough for us to get that bad taste out of our mouth," Whitworth said. "So a point of emphasis during the week was to get the running game going."

The game was tied, 7-7, before Ryan tossed a one-yard touchdown to tight end Jon Loyte with 31 seconds remaining in the first half. The Eagles pulled away in the second half behind TD runs of 26 yards by Callender and seven yards by Whitworth.

"We're happy to get the win tonight," O'Brien said. "I think the team kept their mind on the business. Duke created some problems with some of the things they do, but for the most part I think we executed well enough to win the football game and did."

Freshman Thaddeus Lewis went 20-of-40 for just 131 yards and two interceptions for Duke (0-10, 0-6 Coastal), which saw its national-worst losing streak stretch to 18 games.

With two games left, the Blue Devils are running out chances to earn a victory. They visit division winner Georgia Tech next week before hosting 1-9 North Carolina on November 25.

"We are running out of opportunities," Duke coach Ted Roof said. "I know one thing, they will stick together and fight the next two games. There will be no giving up in this team."

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