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Duke Blue Devils fall to Vanderbilt, 45-28

Posted Saturday, October 28, 2006

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Durham, NC - Despite a recording-tying four-touchdown effort from running back Justin Boyle, the Duke Blue Devils fell to Vanderbilt, 45-28, spoiling Parent’s Day at Wallace Wade Stadium. Boyle also tied his career high with 113 rushing yards on just 14 carries.

Vanderbilt took the opening kickoff and drove 76 yards on 11 plays for a nine-yard touchdown run by quarterback Chris Nickson. The Commodores kept the drive alive by converting a fourth down and two situation from the Duke 43 yard line when Nickson hooked up with Bryant Anderson for a 16-yard gain.

The Commodores then put together a five-play, 97-yard scoring drive that resulted in a 77-yard touchdown pass from Nickson to Earl Bennett. Bryant Hahnfeldt’s point after conversion with 3:12 left in the opening period made the score 14-0.

Nickson extended the lead to 21-0 on Vanderbilt’s third possession, finding the end zone from five yards out on the ground to cap a six-play, 59-yard drive. Following a turnover, Nickson’s 41-yard touchdown strike to George Smith pushed the Commodores ahead by a 28-0 count at the 6:22 mark of the second quarter.

The Blue Devils got on the scoreboard with 1:25 left in the opening period when Boyle capped an 11-play, 80-yard drive with a two-yard touchdown run. Duke converted a key third down and eight from its own 38 yard line when Thaddeus Lewis tossed a 22-yard completion to Jomar Wright. On the final play of the half, Duke’s Casey Camero blocked a 37-yard field goal attempt for a 28-7 score at intermission.

Vanderbilt used a three-yard touchdown run by Cassen Jackson-Garrison with 5:17 remaining in the third quarter to increase the margin to 35-7. The touchdown run finished off an eight-play, 67-yard drive. After Hahnfeldt’s 44-yard field goal pushed the lead to 38-7, Boyle scored from 13 yards out for his second touchdown of the day. Duke’s three-play, 62-yard scoring drive was highlighted by Ronnie Drummer’s 48-yard run from scrimmage.

Duke’s Vincent Rey recovered a fumble on Vanderbilt’s next possession, and Boyle’s third scoring run coupled with Re'quan Boyette’s two-point conversion pulled the Blue Devils within 38-22 at the 7:21 mark of the fourth period.

After Alex Williams recovered an onside kick to give Duke possession, Boyle darted 32 yards for his fourth touchdown of the game. Boyette was stopped short on the two-point conversion attempt to make the score 38-28 with seven minutes left. Boyle’s four-touchdown effort matches the school single-game record held by five others. Robert Baldwin was the last Blue Devil to accomplish the feat with four scores against Maryland in 1994.

Vanderbilt countered with a touchdown as Nickson scored on a one-yard run at the 4:07 mark and teammate D.J. Moore added an interception with under two minutes remaining to help seal the victory.

Duke closes out its four-game homestand next Saturday against Navy. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.

  • Duke and Vanderbilt met for the 10th time this afternoon. Including today’s result, Vanderbilt leads the all-time series, 7-3. Vandy now leads the series in Durham, 3-2.
  • Today’s captains for Duke were senior CB John Talley, senior LB Alex Williams, senior DT Casey Camero and sophomore OT Cameron Goldberg.
  • Against current members of the Southeastern Conference, Duke holds an all-time record of 52-48-5, including its 3-7 mark vs. the Commodores.
  • Senior DT Casey Camero had his third blocked kick of the season and the sixth of his career in the second quarter this afternoon. Camero tipped a 37-yard field goal attempt by Bryant Hahnfeldt as time expired in the first half.
  • Duke ended the game with a season-best 253 rushing yards. Its previous high this season was 201 rushing yards at Alabama on Oct. 7.
  • The Blue Devils had three rushing touchdowns in the first seven games, but ran four in for scores today.
  • Duke scored a season-best 28 points this afternoon. It was the highest scoring output by Duke since a 40-14 victory vs. VMI at Wallace Wade Stadium on Sept. 10, 2005.
  • Junior RB Justin Boyle had four rushing touchdowns this afternoon, tying a school record (it has now been done six times – last by Robert Baldwin vs. Maryland in 1994 prior to today). Boyle matched his career best with 113 yards rushing. It was his second career 100-yard rushing game (he also had 113 vs. VMI in 2005).
  • Junior Ronnie Drummer had a season-long 48-yard run today. The 48-yard run was a team best for Duke this season as well.
  • Junior WR Jomar Wright had four catches today for 59 yards. Three of his four receptions resulted in first downs vs. Vanderbilt. In his career, 41 of his 57 catches have gone for first downs.
  • Sophomore WR Eron Riley extended his consecutive games streak with at least one reception to 14. Currently, that is the fifth-longest streak in the ACC. He had one catch for eight yards today.
  • Freshman LB Vincent Rey recovered his first fumble in his career today.
  • Senior DE Eli Nichols returned to action after missing the past two games with an injury.
  • Duke returns to action next Saturday for 1:00 PM game vs. Navy in Wallace Wade Stadium. It will be the last of a four-game homestand for the Blue Devils.
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Duke Blue Devils fall to Vanderbilt, 45-28

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