Price’s TD Trifecta Leads Wake Past Terps, 34-10
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) — Tanner Price has thrown plenty of touchdown passes to Michael Campanaro over the years.
And before Campanaro broke a Wake Forest career receiving record, he returned the favor.
Price caught a scoring pass from Campanaro as part of his rare trifecta, finishing with touchdowns rushing, receiving and passing in the Demon Deacons’ 34-10 victory over Maryland on Saturday.
Price was 26 of 36 through the air for 231 yards for Wake Forest (4-3, 2-2), scored on a 4-yard run and caught a 4-yard TD pass from Campanaro — the trick-play master’s fourth career touchdown throw.
Price hit Campanaro with a 10-yard touchdown pass to become the first player in school history and the fourth Bowl Subdivision player this season to hit the touchdown trifecta. He joined Clemson’s C.J. Spiller as the only ACC players since 2000 to do it.
“That’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience and not a whole lot of people have done that,” Price said. “I was pretty excited about that and had a lot of fun doing it.”
Campanaro finished with 11 catches to give him 217 for his career — one more than Desmond Clark, who set the school record from 1995-98. He broke the record on a 12-yard grab in the final minutes.
“They really made me work for it,” Campanaro said. “That was tough.”
Campanaro, a Clarksville, Md., native who leads the ACC in receptions and receiving yardage per game, finished with 122 yards receiving and was 2 of 2 passing for 29 yards in his final game against his home-state school.
“When you hear plays like that called from the sideline, you kind of get excited but you’ve got to calm down — you don’t want to mess it up,” Campanaro said of his passes. “That was fun. Tanner and I switched roles for a play.”
Josh Harris’ 1-yard touchdown run on the opening series put the Demon Deacons on their way to their fourth straight home victory over the Terrapins (5-2, 1-2).
Maryland lost two of its starting receivers for the rest of the season with broken legs, coach Randy Edsall said.
He said Deon Long broke the fibula and tibia in his right leg early in the second quarter, and Stefon Diggs broke his fibula early in the fourth. Long was expected to have surgery when the Terps returned to College Park, Md., while Diggs would have surgery this coming week.
“I feel bad for both those guys,” Edsall said. “We’ve got to make sure we move forward. What has to happen is we have to have guys step up and guys go out there and play with the kind of intensity that you have to play with for 60 minutes. We didn’t get that today.”
Backup Caleb Rowe threw a 56-yard touchdown pass to Levern Jacobs to briefly pull Maryland to 24-10 midway through the third quarter.
Price restored Wake Forest’s three-touchdown lead with his scoring pass on the next possession, and Chad Hedlund put the Demon Deacons up by 24 with a 38-yard field goal with 7:46 to play.
Starter C.J. Brown was 15 of 24 for 137 yards in his return from a concussion for Maryland. But he was constantly harassed by nose tackle Nikita Whitlock, threw two interceptions in the second quarter that led directly to Price’s first two touchdowns and was replaced by Rowe midway through the third.
“Things that I saw, it was the best thing for our team to do to try and move the ball in the second half,” Edsall said.
Rowe finished 15 of 27 for 207 yards. Maryland outgained Wake Forest 383-307 but finished with three turnovers.
In the final moments, the Big Ten-bound Terrapins were serenaded by chants of “A-C-C” by the Wake Forest crowd. Maryland fell to 1-9 in ACC road games under Edsall.
The Demon Deacons scored on four of their six possessions in the first half and turned those turnovers into a 24-3 halftime lead.
Merrill Noel’s 49-yard interception return to the Maryland 18 set up Price’s touchdown run that made it 17-3 with 5:21 before the break.
A.J. Marshall picked off Brown on Maryland’s next possession, and that’s when coach Jim Grobe reached into his bag of tricks. Four plays after Campanaro took a lateral from Price and threw a 24-yard pass to Tyree Harris, the Demon Deacons were at it again.
Backup running back Dominique Gibson took a direct snap and flipped the ball to Campanaro, who rolled left and flipped a strike to Price in the end zone with 1:21 before the break.
Quipped Price: “He probably had a lot better rating than I did.”
Actually, it’s better than a lot of people: Campanaro’s unofficial career passer rating improved to 454.5.
(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)