Johnson’s TD run lifts Maryland past Minnesota
Running back Ty Johnson’s 34-yard touchdown run with 1:10 remaining gave Maryland a 31-24 victory over Minnesota on Saturday at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.
Third-string quarterback Max Bortenschlager, pressed into action after Tyrrell Pigrome and Kasim Hill sustained season-ending ACL injuries earlier this year, finished 18 of 28 for 154 yards and two touchdown passes for the Terrapins (3-1, 1-0 Big Ten). Johnson gained 130 yards on 18 carries.
Bortenschlager’s 4-yard touchdown pass to running back Jake Funk with 11:11 left gave Maryland a 24-17 lead. The Golden Gophers made it 24-24 on Shannon Brooks’ 1-yard TD run with 3:54 remaining, one play after wide receiver Eric Carter’s full-extension diving catch went for 35 yards.
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. They outgained the Golden Gophers 262-80 on the ground.
Quarterback Conor Rhoda was 13 of 26 for 229 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions for Minnesota (3-1, 0-1), which allowed 24 points in its first three games — the fewest in the nation — had its five-game home winning streak snapped.
Maryland resorted to trickery on its opening drive when holder Ryan Brand was stopped at the 1-yard line by Jacob Huff on a fake 23-yard field goal attempt. The Terrapins made good on their second possession when Bortenschlager called his own number and scored on a 7-yard quarterback draw.
The Golden Gophers got even when running back Rodney Smith bulled in from the 1 to cap a 62-yard drive early in the second quarter. 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.
Maryland took a 14-7 lead when wide receiver D.J. Moore ran past defensive back Antonio Shenault and hauled in a 27-yard touchdown pass from Bortenschlager 5:17 before intermission.
Henry Darmstadter’s career-long 51-yard field goal with two seconds left in the first half gave the Terrapins a 17-10 lead.
The Gophers tied it 17-17 with 5:18 left in the third quarter on Rhoda’s 7-yard touchdown pass to tight end Brandon Lingen. Wide receiver Tyler Johnson had two receptions on the drive, including 25 yards in tight coverage on third-and-10 from the Maryland 39.