WEST POINT, New York — For the third straight game, Army was poised for a victory. For the third straight time, the Black Knights failed.
Freshman quarterback Kendall Hinton rushed for 101 yards and two touchdowns, Mike Weaver kicked a 47-yard field goal as time expired, and Wake Forest beat Army 17-14 on Saturday.
Army's losses to Fordham, UConn and Wake Forest have come by a combined 10 points as Jeff Monken's second year as head coach shows some promise — just not enough so far.
"It's devastating, but it's promising at the same time," Army linebacker Jeremy Timpf said. "Obviously, we're a little upset, but we've seen some great things from the defense and I think we're getting better. I'm excited to see where we're headed."
Wake Forest drove from its own 11 to the Army 29 in the final seconds as Weaver prepared on the sidelines for his kick. Hinton then nearly threw his third interception, but Army defensive back Xavier Moss, a former wideout, failed to catch the ball after he broke in front of tight end Cam Serigne with a wide-open field in front of him.
"He had it right in his hands," Monken said. "For whatever reason, he didn't look it all the way into his hands. There was a lot of green grass. He was going to take it to the house. It's a missed opportunity."
Weaver won the game on the next play.
Quarterback Ahmad Bradshaw rushed for 61 yards and a touchdown and passed for 54 yards to lead Army. Daniel Grochowski missed a 39-yard field goal attempt with 9:44 left in the fourth quarter for the Black Knights.
Army notched three interceptions, two by freshman Brandon Jackson, and the game was there for the taking against one of the Atlantic Coast Conference's weaker teams.
"Our kids are devastated," Monken said. "They were so excited to play today and really believed we were going to win. We are just really close. You can get beat and then you can be defeated. We might be beaten, but we are not defeated."
Pressed into action when Wake Forest starter John Wolford was hurt early in the game, Hinton scored on runs of 15 and 7 yards in the second half.
"This whole week we've been preparing — you never know what's going to happen," said Hinton, who was 15 of 27 for 159 yards passing. "It's a new experience for me. Guys encouraged me, helped me get comfortable."
Wake Forest (2-1) won its ninth straight in the series and notched its first road victory since beating Army at Michie Stadium in 2013, a span of 11 straight setbacks.
"It's a good win," Wake Forest coach Dave Clawson said. "I don't think it was the prettiest performance, but we have a young team on the road, lost our starting quarterback in the first quarter, turned it over three times and gave them 14 points off turnovers, and still found a way to win."
The Deacons won it after Hinton drove them from their own 7 into field-goal range. After Wake Forest failed to convert any of its five third-down tries in the first half, Hinton converted 6 of 9 in the second. His 13-yard scramble on a third-and-9 play kept the game-winning drive going, and he hit Cortez Lewis for 8 yards on third down to set up the winning kick.
Still, it wasn't easy. The snap was bad and a stiff breeze was blowing.
"The wind was blowing pretty hard in my face," Weaver said. "I was worried about that."
Follow Kekis on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/Greek1947