COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — On the third play of the game, Wake Forest quarterback Tanner Price threw a 73-yard touchdown pass to Terence Davis to put the Demon Deacons in front of Maryland and stun the crowd of 40,391.
Sadly for Wake Forest, that would be high point of a 19-14 loss Saturday.
Price went 13 for 38 for 170 yards, but the Demon Deacons lost two fumbles, missed two field goal tries and twice couldn't punch the ball in the end zone from the Maryland 1.
And it all started so well. Davis slipped behind the Maryland secondary on the right side and was all alone when the pass from Price landed in his hands.
"I don't recall another big play offensively," coach Jim Grobe said. "From that point on, it was pretty tough sledding."
Davis, subbing for injured star receiver Michael Campanaro, finished with seven receptions for 130 yards.
The Demon Deacons (3-3, 1-3 Atlantic Coast Conference) took a 14-13 lead with 7:06 left in the third quarter, moving 24 yards after Maryland's Stefon Diggs fumbled a punt. On third down from the 7, Price threw a touchdown pass to Tommy Bohanon, the fullback's third score in two weeks.
But Diggs caught a short pass from fellow freshman Perry Hills and turned it into a 63-yard gain, setting up a 1-yard run by Justus Pickett with 5:37 left.
Tanner wasn't able to bring the Demon Deacons back, but it wasn't entirely his fault. He spent much of the game running from Maryland's defense, which came in ranked eighth in the nation in yardage allowed.
"I think you have to look at him and say he didn't play very well, but I don't think he had a lot of support," Grobe said. "We dropped some balls today, which hurt us."
The Demon Deacons were without six suspended players: cornerback Merrill Noel, safety Daniel Mack, linebacker Mike Olson, guard Frank Souza, running back Deandre Martin and receiver Airyn Willis. They were cited for violating team rules.
"A combination of injuries and being depleted didn't help us today," Grobe said.
Diggs fumbled a punt and dropped a pass, but his 63-yard jaunt was the difference-maker.
"He made an electric play and you have to give credit to him," Wake Forest linebacker Riley Haynes said. "He made the play and we didn't."
The Terrapins (3-2, 1-0) snapped a two-game skid and surpassed their victory total from 2011, when they went 2-10 in coach Randy Edsall's first season. Maryland also matched its win total in the ACC last season.
Hills went 14 for 25 for 191 yards to help Maryland avenge a 31-10 defeat at Wake Forest last year. The Terrapins won despite committing three turnovers and being flagged for eight penalties.
"We've got a lot of things we still have to clean up," Edsall said. "(But) it's good to be 1-0 in the ACC. Now let's see if we can build on it."
The Demon Deacons have a bye to get over their second straight road loss.
"We're definitely feeling this loss," Bohanon said. "We're down right now."
Maryland led 13-7 at halftime despite fumbling twice, throwing an interception, making only five first downs and being penalized six times for 45 yards. Diggs was the Terrapins' leading rusher, gaining seven yards on one carry.
Wake Forest had 196 yards total offense at the break, 116 of them on five catches by Davis.
After Davis' long TD, Maryland converted a fourth-and-1 from its own 49 in a drive that produced a 49-yard field goal by Brad Craddock.
Minutes later, Lovell Jackson mishandled a Maryland punt after calling for a fair catch. Terrapin Cole Farrand recovered at the Wake Forest 35 to set up a 52-yard field goal.
In the second quarter, a short punt gave Wake Forest the ball at the Maryland 38. Price fumbled a third-down snap at the 1, and on fourth down, Joshua Harris was stopped for no gain.
"When you've got third and a half-a-yard and you fumble the center-quarterback exchange, you know it's maybe not going to be your night," Grobe said.
Minutes later, Kevin Johnson picked off a Hills pass at the Maryland 40, but Jimmy Newman missed wide left on a 42-yard field goal try. He also missed from 44 late in the half.
The Terrapins took the lead with 2:19 left in the second quarter. Hills directed a 75-yard march that included a 23-yard completion to Diggs and ended with a 33-yard touchdown pass to Kevin Dorsey.