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Duke knocks off Miami, controls ACC Coastal

Nov 17, 2013 - 2:17 AM Durham, NC ( - Brandon Connette ran for a career-high four touchdowns and threw for one score to lead the Duke Blue Devils to a 48-30 upset of the No.24 Miami Hurricanes.

Duke (8-2, 4-2 ACC), which scored the game's final 20 points, has won six straight and has its first eight-win season since 1994. If the Blue Devils win their last two games, they will capture the Coastal Division and face Florida State in the ACC Championship Game.

This win was only the second time Duke beat Miami, with the first coming in the schools' first meeting in 1976.

Connette completed 5-of-9 passes for 81 yards while carrying the ball 11 times for 37 yards. Shaquille Powell, who ran for 59 yards and a touchdown on seven carries, added two catches for 23 yards and another score.

Stephen Morris was 30-for-49 for 379 yards, two touchdowns and an interception for Miami (7-3, 3-3), which has now lost three straight. Herb Waters had nine catches for 116 yards and two touchdowns.

Matt Goudis kicked a 31-yard field goal with 5:04 remaining in the third quarter to boost the Hurricanes to a 30-28 edge.

Connette's 43-yard pass to Max McCaffrey on the ensuing possession set up Ross Martin's 48-yard field goal. The kick clanked off the left upright and through to give Duke the lead with 2:47 remaining in the third.

Duke's next offensive touch was highlighted by a 56-yard run from Josh Snead. After Jela Duncan ran the ball another 15 yards, Connette scampered for a 4- yard touchdown run less than four minutes into the fourth quarter.

The next possession for the Blue Devils again resulted in seven points. On 4th-and-1, Powell busted up the middle 33 yards to the end zone with 6:50 to play.

"We ran a zone play and they blitzed," Duke coach David Cutcliffe said. "When you blitz - and our offensive front picked it up beautifully. We cut a gap off and if you leave one gap open there is nobody there and Shaq knew exactly what to do and I'm real proud of that play. I made that decision right there to go for it on fourth down. It was the right decision. We were playing to win the football game and I think our players responded to that."

Miami didn't get a first down on its next possession and Martin kicked a 32- yard field goal with 1:04 remaining.

The Hurricanes started the game with possession and drove 61 yards on 10 plays for a 32-yard field goal from Goudis. The drive was highlighted by a Morris completion to Dallas Crawford for 30 yards.

The Blue Devils' first drive was a three-and-out, which led to a 79-yard punt return for a touchdown by Stacy Coley.

On their next offensive drive Duke chipped away and took 10 plays to travel 75 yards. The drive culminated with a Connette 2-yard touchdown run to make the score 10-7.

As Miami began its next drive, Morris found Allen Hurns for an 18-yard completion; and after the catch a face-masking penalty was called to take the ball into Duke territory. After two third-down conversions, the drive ended with Morris completing a 5-yard touchdown pass to Waters for a 17-7 cushion.

The Hurricanes started deep in their own zone to start the second quarter, but quickly found some room as Morris completed a 33-yard pass to Maurice Hagens. After two more completions and three Crawford runs, Morris threw an errant pass that Deondre Singleton intercepted.

"You could say the momentum changed there," Miami coach Al Golden said. "It was unfortunate because we had a chance for a completion, and they got the ball with some good field position. There were so many other things that we did wrong. It's my responsibility. The penalties. We didn't tackle well enough. We didn't get enough red zone stops. It was really disappointing."

The Blue Devils took little time to respond, as they drove 52 yards in a minute and 32 seconds. The 62-yard drive was finished off by a 22-yard completion for a touchdown from Connette to Powell.

Morris then took Miami downfield with two 17-yard passes, one to Waters and the other to Crawford. The Hurricanes made their way to the 8-yard line before a unsportsmanlike penalty was called on Morris for tossing the ball at a defender after he was tackled.

The penalty backed up Miami to the Blue Devils' 25-yard line and led to a 32- yard field goal from Goudis.

The Blue Devils then drove 75 yards on 10 plays. The march ended with a 3-yard touchdown run by Connette to make the score 21-20 going into halftime.

The second half began with the Blue Devils again moving 75 yards in 10 plays. Duke continued its scoring trend as Connette scored on a 1-yard run.

Miami answered right back on three plays, after an incompletion on first down, Eduardo Clements ran 28 yards to the 50-yard line. On the next play, Morris hit Waters on a wide receiver screen which resulted in a 50-yard dash to the end zone to get Miami within 28-27.

Game Notes

The teams combined for 1,108 yards of offense ... Snead ran for 138 yards on nine carries ... This marks the first time since 1971 that Duke has beaten two top 25 teams in the same season. The Blue Devils topped Virginia Tech earlier this season ... Hurns had eight receptions for 107 yards, while Crawford had 19 carries for 115 yards ... Miami leads the all-time series, 9-2.