Gophers Host Maryland in Big Ten Opener

Remigio Civitarese
Ottobre 1, 2017

But on Saturday, the Gophers allowed 269 rushing yards to the Terrapins, including a clinching 34-yard touchdown run from running back Ty Johnson with 1:10 remaining.

Earlier in the fourth quarter, Maryland (3-1) took the 24-17 lead with the first points against the Gophers defense in the second half this season. Running back Shannon Brooks scored from 1 yard out on the ensuing play to tie the game at 24 with 3:54 remaining. Bortenschlager finished 18-for-28 passing for 154 yards and two touchdowns and ran for another.

The Terrapins - playing in the state of Minnesota for the first time - won for only the second time in their last nine conference road games. This season, Minnesota has allowed an average of 59.0 rushing yards per game, the best in the nation. Maryland (3-1, 1-0 Big Ten) rushed for 262 yards overall, led by Johnson's 130 on 18 carries. That was evident as Maryland committed to running the ball a week after gaining just 42 yards on the ground.

Minnesota's top safety, Antoine Winfield Jr., went down with an injury in the first quarter and did not return. Rhoda hadn't thrown a pick since the first half of the season opener against Buffalo. Minnesota was threatening for more when Maryland defensive back Josh Woods intercepted Rhoda's pass at the Terrapins' 8-yard line with 9:50 left in second quarter.

"They played us really well defensively", Rhoda said.

After Bortenschalger started the scoring with a 7-yard TD run with 2:44 left in the first quarter, the Gophers tied the score at 7-7 with a 1-yard score by Rodney Smith early in the second quarter. "That was the biggest thing for us today", said linebacker Jonathan Celestin. At then end of the half, Maryland exposed the Gophers' prevent defense with a 17-yard run by Johnson to set up a 51-yard field goal by senior Henry Darmstadter to make it 17-10 at intermission. "We thought that was a game we could win, but bottom line we just didn't play well enough to win that game".

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