Check out the searchable USFL stats from the Stats Crew.

Order the new book, The United States Football League, 1982–1986.

Baltimore 20 at New Jersey 17

1985 Quarterfinals - Monday, July 1, 1985
Attendance: 26,982


E. RUTHERFORD, NJ (AP) - Garcia Lane scored on a league-record 91-yard punt return and set up another touchdown with another punt return as the defending champion Baltimore Stars edged the New Jersey Generals 20-17 in the opening round of the United States Football League playoffs Monday night.

The victory advanced the Stars, 11-7-1, in a semifinal round playoff game next Sunday in Birmingham against the 14-5 Stallions, and it ended New Jersey's season at 11-8.

The Generals played the game without Doug Flutie after Coach Walt Michaels made a gutsy decision Saturday not to risk bringing the rookie quarterback back too soon from a broken collarbone suffered on June 1.

Ron Reeves, his replacement, almost rallied New Jersey to victory, but the Generals never recovered from a 13-0 first quarter deficit handed them by Lane. Lane fielded a Rick Partridge punt at the Baltimore nine, eluded one tackle and then criss-crossed the field on his 91-yard score with 8:30 remaining in the opening quarter.

Two series later, Lane returned a Partridge punt 35 yards to the New Jersey 20. Stars quarterback Chuck Fusina scored on a four yard quarterback draw four plays later, but David Trout missed the extra point, making it 13-0.

New Jersey closed the gap to 13-7 on a 1-yard dive by Herschel Walker with 2:26 left in the half. Walker, who set a professional football single season rushing record this past season with 2,411 yards, was limited to 56 yards on 25 carries by the Stars defense.

However, Fusina hit Scott Frtzkee on a five-yard touchdown pass with 29 seconds to play in the half to make it 20-7.

The Generals special teams kept the Stars drive alive by going offsides on fourth down. Interceptions by Kerry Justin and Kyle Borland set a 40-yard field goal by Roger Ruzek late in the third quarter and a three yard touchdown run by Maurice Carthon early in the fourth quarter to close the margin to 20-17. But that was as close as the Generals were to get.

QUARTERFINAL PLAYOFF:

July 1, 1985
Baltimore Stars - 20
New Jersey Generals - 17
at Giants Stadium
26,962

Baltimore       13   7   0   0  --   20
New Jersey       0   7   3   7  --   17

1st Qtr ---- BALT - Lane 91 punt return (Trout kick)
             BALT - Fusina 4 run (kick failed)
2nd Qtr ---- NJ - Walker 1 run (Ruzek kick)
             BALT - Fitzkee 5 pass from Fusina (Trout kick)
3rd Qtr ---- NJ - FG Ruzek 40
4th Qtr ---- NJ - Carthon 3 run (Ruzek kick)

INDIVIDUAL STATS
RUSHING = Baltimore: Bryant 18-54, Harvin 6-22, Fusina 5-9.  New Jersey:
       Walker 25-66, Carthon 13-35, Reeves 1-4.
PASSING = Baltimore: Fusina 10-20-3-98.  New Jersey: Reeves 16-32-2-172.
RECEIVING = Baltimore: Bryant 3-24, Caver 2-19, Fitzkee 2-13, Riley 1-33,
       Dunek 1-5, Harvin 1-4.  New Jersey: Bowers 5-64, Walker 4-44, Collins
       4-34, Carthon 5-64, Spek 1-20.
MISSED FIELD GOALS = Baltimore: Trout 42.  New Jersey: Ruzek 48.

Back to 1985 season results