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No. 4 Hurricanes Upset By UNC, 31-28

No. 4 Hurricanes Upset By UNC, 31-28

Oct. 30, 2004

Final Stats

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By KEITH PARSONS
AP Sports Writer

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – North Carolina might have kicked Miami right out of the national title race.

Connor Barth booted a 42-yard field goal on the final play of the game,giving North Carolina a shocking 31-28 upset of the fourth-ranked Hurricanes onSaturday night.

When Miami called a timeout just before the kick, fans began lining thehedges just outside the sidelines in preparation for the celebration. The ballflew just inside the left upright, and soon the field was covered with people,celebrating North Carolina’s first win over a top five opponent. Both goalposts went down within minutes of Barth’s field goal.

Darian Durant led the Tar Heels (4-4, 3-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) on a65-yard drive for the winning points, completing all four passes and gettingthe final 5 yards on a keeper up the middle. He finished 21-for-29 for 266yards and two touchdowns, and Chad Scott overcame an injured hip to rush for acareer-high 175 yards.

Miami (6-1, 3-1) trailed by seven points with 5:24 left, but Brock Berlindrove his team 89 yards to tie it. Devin Hester went in on a sweep from the 4,setting up the final possession for Durant and North Carolina.

Berlin was 20-for-35 for 338 yards and two touchdowns, but the Hurricaneshad only 77 yards rushing, the first time all season they’ve failed to reach100.

They showed signs of faltering in recent weeks, despite winning their firstsix games for the fourth straight season. In the previous two games, theyallowed a total of 947 yards in victories over Louisville and North CarolinaState, and the Tar Heels also took advantage.

They took the opening kickoff and drove 57 yards in only four plays to takea 7-0 lead on Durant’s 35-yard scoring toss to Mike Mason. In the first halfalone, North Carolina had 351 yards of total offense.

Scott consistently found openings in the defense, and about the only thingthat slowed him down was a hip pointer he suffered late in the third quarter.He walked gingerly to the locker room, but jogged back to the sideline about 15minutes later to a loud cheer from the soldout crowed.

On the first carry of his return, he ran 5 yards on second-and-4, thencapped off that drive by bulling his way 9 yards into the end zone to make it28-21 early in the fourth.

Berlin, who had 11 touchdown passes in the past three games, started fastagain, going 7-for-9 for 131 yards and two TDs in the first quarter. But theHurricanes abandoned the passing game and tried to establish the run, a tacticthat didn’t work. Tyrone Moss led the ground game with 30 yards on eightcarries, and leading rusher Frank Gore had only 27.

Miami was one of seven unbeaten teams at the start of the day.