COLLEGE PARK, MARYLAND — A hectic fourth quarter in a crucial Big Ten battle set up a situation where whichever team had the ball last between Purdue and Maryland was probably going to win the game. So long as penalties did not rear their ugly head, of course.
The Terrapins had the ball last, and their ninth penalty of the game at the most critical of situations cost them a chance at victory.
Boilermakers quarterback Aidan O’Connell threw for 360 yards and two touchdowns, leading Purdue to a 31-29 road victory over the Maryland Terrapins at SECU Stadium on Saturday. Maryland appeared to have tied the game on a successful two-point conversion with 35 seconds left, but an ineligible man downfield penalty wiped out the score, and the Terrapins’ retry to tie the score failed.
The Boilermakers found themselves in the same situation on the road four weeks ago against Syracuse, where a combined 42 points were scored in the fourth quarter and the Boilermakers were poised to win after an O’Connell touchdown pass to tight end Payne Durham with 1:22 remaining gavePurdue a 29-25 lead. However, two 15-yard penalties after that score, including an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on Durham after the extra point, allowed Syracuse to start its eventual game-winning touchdown drive on Purdue’s side of the 50.
Durham played a huge part late in this game as well, catching a four-yard pass from O’Connell for a touchdown with 3:55 remaining to give the Boilermakers a 24-23 lead after the made extra point. After the Boilermakers forced a punt on Maryland’s next drive, Devin Mockobee’s 1-yard plunge with 1:23 remaining gave Purdue an eight-point lead with 1:23 remaining.
*Editor’s note: Above the byline is the photo gallery from Saturday afternoon’s game, with all photos taken by DC-Area photographer Rodney Pierce. After clicking on the first photo to enlarge the picture, make sure to press the left and right arrow buttons to scroll through the rest of the pictures. There are 33 pictures in total.