WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) — Army set out to curtail No. 15 Wake Forest’s big-play offense.
So the Demon Deacons gashed the Black Knights in other ways.
Christian Turner had two of No. 15 Wake Forest’s four rushing touchdowns in a 45-10 victory Saturday night.
“This game was different from a lot of other games,” running back Justice Ellison said. “I love our running back performance.”
The Demon Deacons (5-1) put on an early clinic in rushing offense against an Army team that favors an all-out running attack. Ellison led Wake Forest running backs with 96 yards on 11 carries with a touchdown.
“They kind of gave us the run and we took it,” Wake Forest coach Dave Clawson said.
Army’s plan went awry because of the Demon Deacons’ willingness to grind out drives.
Wake Forest, which won for the second week in a row following a double-overtime loss to Clemson, compiled 94 first-quarter rushing yards while claiming a 14-0 lead. The Demon Deacons finished with 267 yards rushing.
“We came out this game wanting to take away the big play,” Army linebacker Peyton Hampton said. “Missed tackles. I’m sure there were missed assignments. We just didn’t do well enough on our side.”
The way this unfolded was a big contrast to Wake Forest’s 70-56 road victory last year at Army.
“We weren’t perfect (on defense), but we were much better as far as being in the right place,” Clawson said.
Sam Hartman threw a touchdown pass on his way to 246 yards on 13-for-19 passing.
Army (1-4) lost in its lone road game across a two-month stretch on the schedule. The Black Knights had 225 rushing yards, led by Ay’Jaun Marshall with 44 on three carries.
The Black Knights finally scored on Jemel Jones’ 20-yard pass to Isaiah Alston in the fourth quarter.
The Demon Deacons scored on Quinton Cooley’s 1-yard, fourth-down run with 2:37 to play in the first half.
Army had 194 yards of first-half offense, but was hurt by two turnovers.
The Black Knights had a couple of strong scoring chances. They fumbled on the game’s first possession inside the Wake Forest 10, resulting in the Demon Deacons’ 91-yard touchdown drive.
“It hurts the stomach,” Alston said. “When we get down in that territory, we got to punch it in.”
Another chance went by the wayside on Quinn Maretzki’s missed 42-yard field goal in the third quarter.
TAKE SOME TIME
Clawson said the Demon Deacons appear good on the injury front heading into an open week on the schedule. That’s the case even after Hartman went airborne on one scramble.
There was a message for the quarterback: “Don’t hurdle people,” Clawson said.
After three weeks in a row with the result in doubt late in games, this was a breather for the Demon Deacons.
“It was a nice to have a game that wasn’t like that,” Clawson said. “We’ll enjoy the bye week a lot more.”
HE CAN CATCH
It was a breakthrough game for Wake Forest linebacker Dylan Hazen, a redshirt freshman who was charted with 12 tackles. He also intercepted a pass – and at least wanted to pretend to know what to do.
“I hadn’t touched the ball since freshman year of high school,” Hazen said.
THANKS FOR COMING
Hampton attended high school at nearby Davie County. He said he had 35-40 friends in family in the crowd for his final road game to this part of the country.
Army: The Black Knights weren’t able to sustain drives and they remained winless this season against Football Bowl Subdivision competition. This marked the only nationally ranked team on Army’s schedule.
Wake Forest: This was a solid outing for the Demon Deacons prior to an open week on the schedule. The Demon Deacons did most of the pushing around at the line of scrimmage and they’ve reached the midway mark of their regular-season schedule with lots of good vibes.
Wake Forest completed its nonconference slate with a 4-0 mark with the largest margin among those games. Virginia Military Institute, Vanderbilt and Liberty were the other foes. The Demon Deacons likely hold steady in the poll, though there will be chances to move up in November with two games against teams currently in the Top 25.
Army: Hosts Colgate next Saturday.
Wake Forest: Hosts Boston College on Oct. 22.
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