EditorsNote: 8th graf, change 10-harder to 10-yarder
A couple of second-half defensive plays woke up a dormant Miami offense, and the No. 17 Hurricanes rallied from a 20-point deficit for a 28-27 victory over host Florida State on Saturday.
Quarterback N’Kosi Perry struggled for much of the game but ended up throwing four touchdown passes, the last a 41-yarder to tight end Brevin Jordan early in the fourth quarter to give the Hurricanes (5-1, 2-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) their first lead.
The Seminoles (3-3, 1-3 ACC) were leading 27-7 early in the second half when Miami defensive tackle Gerald Willis III recovered a fumble at the Seminoles’ 22-yard line to set up Miami’s second touchdown on Perry’s fourth-down touchdown pass to receiver Lawrence Cager.
Then linebacker Michael Pinckney’s interception gave the Hurricanes the ball at the Seminoles’ 17-yard line, and Perry hit receiver Jeff Thomas in the end zone on first down to cut Miami’s deficit to six points.
Florida State led 20-7 at the half thanks mostly to two key plays and Miami’s failed fourth-down gamble.
Linebacker DeCalon Brooks recovered Perry’s fumble to set up Ricky Aguayo’s 42-yard field goal that broke a 7-7 tie. D.J. Matthews’ 42-yard punt return on the ensuing series set the Seminoles up at Miami’s 36-yard line, leading to quarterback Deondre Francois’ 17-yard touchdown pass with 1:32 left in the second quarter.
In the closing seconds of the second quarter, Perry threw incomplete on fourth down. That left the Seminoles with enough time for Aguayo’s 53-yard field goal as time ran out in the period.
Earlier, Francois had a 17-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Keith Gavin for a 7-0 first quarter lead, and Miami tied it with an 83-yard drive capped by Perry’s first pass touchdown pass, a 10-yarder to Cager early in the second quarter.
Matthews’ 74-yard punt return in the third quarter gave the Seminoles their final touchdown.
—Field Level Media