Dallas also got a strong effort from its relatively inexperienced running backs, from some youngsters on the offensive line, and by a defense making the switch to the 4-3 alignment under new coordinator Monte Kiffin.
"Any time you can give young players an extra chance to play in a game, they grow," Garrett said. "With an extra preseason game, it makes sense to give those young guys an opportunity to play."
Hollomon, a sixth-round pick from South Carolina, was perfectly situated when rookie Chad Bumphis had Matt Moore's pass go off his hands in the second quarter. "I thought about it the whole way here and it actually happened," he said of making a big play, after which he got his "first handshake from coach Garrett."
The linebacker sped toward the end zone with a group of blockers escorting him, and after he scored he tightly clutched the ball as he headed to the Dallas sideline. "I had a celebration in my mind, but I was overwhelmed and decided to celebrate with my teammates," he said.
"It was fantastic, a really great play from him," Garrett said. "We were swarming to the football, had a lot of guys around the quarterback, and then the ball pops in the air and he makes a great play and great run."
Bumphis otherwise had a strong game with five receptions for 85 yards.
The Cowboys controlled most of the game one night after their former offensive lineman, Larry Allen, and former coach, Bill Parcells, were inducted into the hall. Quarterback Tony Romo, coming off back surgery to remove a cyst, sat out for Dallas. So the Cowboys turned to their ground game -- and ground down Miami as few regulars got onto the field.
"We're trying to get an identity as a group," Tanner said. "We had 'Coach' DeMarco on the sideline telling us to just go out and play."
Tanner soon departed with a left arm injury, but returned and ran over and through Miami's defense. Dallas moved the ball well in offensive coordinator Bill Callahan's first outing as its play caller; those duties were taken away from head coach Jason Garrett in the offseason. Of course, few starters ever made it onto the field for either side.
But rookie Kendial Lawrence ran in from 7 yards with 1:57 left to clinch it for Dallas, even though Moore returned and added a 5-yard TD pass to Kyle Miller with 16 seconds to go.
Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press