Ohio State sails past Maryland

Besides taking a knee at the end of the first half, No. 7 Ohio State scored on each of its first nine possessions in dominating Maryland, 66-17.

For the second game in a row, quarterback C.J. Stroud threw for five touchdowns. Overall, he was an efficient 24-for-33 for 406 yards.

The three-headed monster at wide receiver again turned in a stellar day as Chris Olave moved into sole possession of third place in Ohio State annals with his 28th and 29th career TD catches. He finished with seven balls for 120 yards. Jaxson Smith-Njigba had five catches for 103 and Garrett Wilson accounted for the first score of each half en route to a five-grab, 84-yard day.

Freshman standout TreVeyon Henderson accounted for a hat trick in the scoring department with a pair of rushing touchdowns and a six-point reception. He finished with 16 totes for 102 yards and then added 67 receiving on four catches.

Defensively, the Buckeyes limited Maryland to 335 yards of total offense with five sacks and two interceptions.

The No. 7 ranked Buckeyes are now 5-1 on the season and 3-0 in B1G play, while Maryland falls to 4-2 / 1-2. The Buckeyes are off next week and then travel to Indiana Oct. 23. Kick off is TBA.

Maryland took its opening possession of the game and drove deep into Buckeye territory. Ohio State forced a Terp field goal attempt following a sack by Javontae Jean-Baptiste on third and 3 from the OSU 30. Maryland’s Joseph Petrino connected from 48 yards out to cap the 10-play- 45-yard drive.

The Buckeyes answered on the ensuing possession with the game’s first touchdown. Ohio State marched 88 yards in 17 plays and ate more than 6:00 off the clock as Stroud connected on 9-of-12 passes, including a 2-yard strike to Wilson for the score. The Buckeyes converted a key third and 13 just past midfield when Stroud found Smith-Njigba for 14 yards to move the chains.

After forcing a punt, the Buckeyes squeezed in another touchdown just ahead of the quarter break. Stroud found Wilson along the sideline and Henderson out in the flat for chunk pass plays before Henderson blasted in from four yards. The Buckeyes covered 74 yards in five plays in a shade under two minutes.

Just moments into the second quarter, the Buckeyes made it three possessions and three TDs. Stroud delivered a bullet to a wide open Olave streaking across the middle of the field and into the endzone for the 36 yard score. The drive spanned 62 yards on three plays in just over a minute of play.

Maryland turned in its best drive of the day midway through the period, driving 75 yards on 12 plays in four and a half minutes. The drive culminated in a Taulia Tagovailoa pass to Carlos Carriere to cut the Ohio State lead to 21-10.

Following a 67-yard kick return from Emeka Egbuka to set the Buckeyes up deep in Terp territory, Henderson accounted for all 29 yards on the drive including a 26 catch and run from Stroud for six points.

After converting a fourth and one for a 30-yard gain to the OSU 11, a Maryland stalled in its next four plays deep in Buckeye territory. J.T. Tuimolau gave the Buckeye possession again after sacking Tagovailoa at the 18 yard.

The Buckeyes struck back quickly as Stroud found Smith-Njigba for 42 yards before Master Teague accounted for the last 25 yards of the drive and the fifth touchdown of the half.

Ohio State opened the second half the same as the first, with another explosive drive that ended with a Stroud to Wilson dime in the corner of the endzone. The scoring play accounted for 26 of the 66-yard drive that spanned 2:27 on the clock.

Olave capped the seventh Buckeye scoring drive with a circus, juggling 30-yard touchdown catch on fourth-and-one to put the Buckeyes ahead 49-10 middle of the third quarter. The drive covered 75 yards in seven plays and took 2:41 off the clock.

Henderson completed the hat trick late in the third period with a 14-yard rumble off the right side. The play capped a 66-yard drive on six plays; again in just a little more than two minutes.

Maryland’s Tagovailoa threw his second TD pass of the game at the end of the third quarter to Rakim Jarrett for 43 yards to make the score 56-17 headed to the fourth.

In the fourth quarter, Craig Young picked off a Maryland pass and returned it 70 yards for a touchdown. The Buckeyes now have a pick six in each of their last four games and have scored a defensive TD in five of the six games this season.