Maryland handles Michigan State; fifth straight Spartans loss

Posted at 11:23 PM, Oct 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-23 00:07:05-04
COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) -- Perry Hills threw a pair of touchdown passes in his return to the lineup and Maryland kept Michigan State winless in the Big Ten with 28-17 victory Saturday night.
Maryland (5-2, 2-2 Big Ten) also extended the Spartans' losing streak to five games, the longest skid under 10-year coach Mark Dantonio.
Ty Johnson led Maryland's dominant running attack with 115 yards on nine carries, while Lorenzo Harrison finished with 105 yards on 17 carries. The Terrapins amassed 447 total yards and bounced back from a pair of losses.
"That was a fun night for our guys," Maryland first-year coach DJ Durkin said. "The message for our guys all week long, in particular later in the week, yesterday and today, was to have fun, enjoy this. This is a great opportunity. A night game. National TV. A program with great tradition who has had great success in our conference coming to town. We knew it was going to be a great atmosphere and it was."
Michigan State redshirt freshman Brian Lewerke got his second consecutive start and went 11 for 24 with 156 yards with an interception. He also ran for 79 yards on 10 carries.  LJ Scott  had a big day on the ground for the Spartans finishing with 128 yards and a touchdown.
The Spartans (2-5, 0-4) took their first lead, 17-14 on a 34-yard field goal by Michael Geiger with 1:35 left in the third quarter. Johnson continued to find a holes and a 44-yard run put Maryland into Michigan State territory. Two plays later, the Terrapins retook the lead on a 2-yard run by Kenneth Goins Jr.
Hills put the game away with a 9-yard touchdown pass to Levern Jacobs with 3:23 left in the game. Hills, who suffered a shoulder injury Oct. 8 against Penn State and missed the previous game against Minnesota, was 21 of 27 for 200 yards Saturday.
"A lot of guys wouldn't have even played," Durkin said. "He not only played, but he played well."
Michigan State linebacker Riley Bullough was ejected with 4:39 left in the first quarter for targeting. That penalty helped Maryland extend a season-long 96-yard scoring drive, capped by Harrison's 8-yard run.
The Spartans went up-tempo and pulled to within 8-7 on a 48-yard touchdown run by Scott with 9:42 left in the second quarter. Hills reponded on the ensuing drive with a 36-yard pass to D.J. Moore but Adam Greene missed the PAT.
That allowed Michigan State to tie the game, 14-14, on a 1-yard run Gerald Holmes in the final minute of the half.
"Disappointing outcome," Dantonio said. "I thought we came into this football game prepared. The reality of this situation is too many missed opportunities on offense. Too many penalties on defense in the first half. It's tough to win a football game when two guys run for a hundred yards on you."
Michigan State: The Spartans face an uphill battle for a 10th straight bowl appearance with the toughest part of the their schedule still ahead. Michigan State must still play No. 3 Michigan next week and No. 2 Ohio State (Nov. 19).
Maryland: After a 4-0 start, the Terrapins gained some much-needed momentum to avoid missing a bowl game for the second consecutive season. However, Maryland plays three ranked opponents (Michigan, Ohio State and No. 8 Nebraska) over its final five games.
Michigan State hosts No. 3 Michigan (7-0, 4-0) next Saturday. The Spartans stunned Michigan 27-23 last season when safety Jalen Watts-Jackson picked up a flubbed punt and ran 38 yards for the go-ahead touchdown on the final play of the game.
Maryland travels to Indiana on Saturday. The Hoosiers (3-4, 1-3) beat the Terrapins 47-28 last season and lead the all-time series 3-1.