Spartans Fall to Eagles 24-21

Boston College safety Jamie Silva is making his presence felt, picking off two Brian Hoyer passes to give the Eagles a 17-13 third quarter lead.

ORLANDO, FL - Michigan State came out with all guns blazing when Devin Thomas set a Big Ten record for kickoff return yardage when he took the opening kickoff by 78 yards to the Boston Colege 18-yard line.

Three plays later, Brian Hoyer hit Kellen Davis in the end zone for an 18-yard TD pass to give MSU a quick 7-0 lead.

The Spartans were marching again on their third possession behind the one-two punch of Jehuu Caulcrick and Javon Ringer who combined for 62 yards on the possesion to move it from their own 38-yard line to the Boston Colege 18, but Hoyer's pass intended for Devin Thomas was picked off by All-American safety Jamie Silva killing the drive.

MSU's defense sent BC three-and out, but Hoyer fumbled the snap on the first play which was recovered by the Eagles, setting them up first and ten at the 11-yard line. It took just four plays for Boston College quarterback Matt Ryan to find Jon Loyte from one-yard out to tie the score.

After starting four-of-four, the streaky Hoyer went ice cold going 3-of-13 with two interceptions after the intial drive.

Early in the second quarter, Ryan hit Rich Gunnell on a 29-yard strike behind MSU's Chris Rucker to give the Eagles a 14-7 lead.

BC punter Johnny Ayers hit one off the side of his foot, giving Michigan State the ball at the BC 30-yard line. MSU converted the miscue into a Brett Swenson 39-yard field goal, cutting the Eagles lead to four points.

With the Eagles attempting a two-minute drill, Freshman Eric Gordon picked off Ryan's throw, returning it to the Boston College 27-line. On the first play from scrimmage, Hoyer gave it right back, throwing his second pick into the waiting hand of Jamie Silva, a miscue that cost MSU at least three points.

Boston College took a four-point lead into the halftime locker room.

Michigan State and Boston College traded third quarter field goals (Swenson, 23-yards, Steve Aponavicius, 28-yards) to keep the Eagles advantage at four points late in the third quarter.

But Ryan found Gunnell behind Rucker again, this time for 68-yards to give the Eagles an 11-point cushion. The Eagles appeared to be salting the game away, but freshman All-American Greg Jones sacked Ryan, forced a fumble which was recovered by Oren Wilson.

But Hoyer got off the mat, scrambling away from pressure, threw on the run over the outstretched hand of Silva to Deon Curry to pull MSU to within four. Hoyer followed by hitting Davis for the two-point conversion to pull the Spartans within three with 6:04 remaining.

The Spartans defense held the Eagles in check and on third-and-inches, Ryan fumbled the snap forcing the Eagles to punt, but Devin Thomas mishandled the punt setting up MSU at the four-yard line.

Then with just over two minutes remaining, Hoyer threw his fourth interception of the day and the Eagles ran out the clock to get the win.

Michigan State ends its season at 7-6, Boston College moves to 11-2.

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