for this game

Late fumble allows Georgia Tech to hold off Florida State

Nov 2, 2008 - 1:18 AM ATLANTA (Ticker) -- Georgia Tech's first Atlantic Coast Conference victory over Florida State did not come without some anxious moments in the final minute.

But a hit by safety Cooper Taylor caused Florida State's Marcus Sims to fumble on the 3-yard line with 45 seconds remaining Saturday, allowing the Yellow Jackets to hold on for a 31-28 victory over the 16th-ranked Seminoles.

Georgia Tech (7-2, 4-2 ACC Coastal) snapped a 12-game losing streak in the series, beating Florida State for the first time since 1975, when the Seminoles were an independent. Florida State had been 12-0 against the Yellow Jackets since joining the ACC.

"It was the last play of the game, we either had to stop them right there (or lose)," Taylor said. "I'm in shock right now."

Taylor jarred the ball loose after hitting Sims. The ball rolled forward, and Georgia Tech's Rashaad Reid fell on it in the end zone, resulting in a touchback.

The Yellow Jackets took a pair a knees to close out a victory that puts them in position to make a run for the Coastal Division title.

Jonathan Dwyer rushed for 145 yards two touchdowns for Georgia Tech, which has a one-half game lead over Virginia and Miami in the division race.

The Yellow Jackets lost to Virginia, 24-17, last week and host Miami on November 20 in its ACC finale.

After being shut out for the first 24 minutes of the second half, Florida State (6-2, 3-2 ACC Atlantic) appeared on the verge of rallying from a 31-20 deficit before Sims' fumble.

"It could have been one of the greatest comebacks, but we fumbled it," said Florida State coach Bobby Bowden, whose team had won its previous four games.

The loss dropped Florida State one-half game behind Maryland in the Atlantic Division race. The Seminoles play at Maryland on November 22.

After trailing, 10-3, after the first quarter, Georgia Tech scored three touchdowns in the first six minutes of the second quarter to open a 24-10 lead.

Dwyer ripped off a 66-yard TD run less than two minutes into the second half, and Georgia Tech's defense forced two punts and a fumble on Florida State's first three possessions of the second half.

Dwyer also scored on a 36-yard TD run as part of Georgia Tech's eruption early in the second quarter.

"Take those two plays back and we probably would have won the ballgame," Bowden said.

Florida State quarterback Christian Ponder tossed a 4-yard TD pass to Seddrick Holloway and Graham Gano kicked a 45-yard field goal with 45 seconds left in the second quarter to pull Florida State within 24-20 at the half.

Trailing 31-20, Florida State finally got something going when Ponder completed a 4th-and-3 pass to Bert Reed for six yards to the Yellow Jackets' 39.

On the next play, Florida State used some razzle-dazzle as backup quarterback D'Vontrey Richardson hit Preston Parker for a touchdown pass with 6:04 remaining.

The Seminoles quickly got back the ball as Patrick Robinson intercepted Jaybo Shaw at Florida State's 41-yard line on the next play from scrimmage.

The Seminoles converted another fourth down, as Ponder found Reed for nine yards on a 4th-and-6 from the Seminoles' 45. Ponder then hit Parker for 11 yards.

Jermaine Thomas carried for consecutive games of 7, 10 and 12 yards, giving Florida State a 1st-and-goal at the 6. Thomas took a break as Antone Smith rushed for three yards on first down before Sims fumbled on second down.

"I told (Sims) it could happen to any of us, to keep his head up," Ponder said. "He was pretty upset."

Ponder completed 16-of-27 passes for 149 yards and a touchdown, and Thomas rushed for 130 yards on just nine attempts.








  • NCAAF FINAL
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA ST (16) 10 10 0 8 28
    GEORGIA TECH 3 21 7 0 31 FINAL
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: FLORIDA ST - TD, CHRISTIAN PONDER 3 YD RUN (
    KICK), 6:29. FLORIDA ST 7-0
    GEORGIA TECH - FG, SCOTT BLAIR 31 YD, 8:26.
    FLORIDA ST 7-3
    FLORIDA ST - FG, GRAHAM GANO 29 YD, 12:06.
    FLORIDA ST 10-3
    2ND QUARTER

    Florida State 28, Georgia Tech 31  FinalNov 1 6:46 PM


  • NCAAF END, 3RD QTR
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA ST (16) 10 10 0 20
    GEORGIA TECH 3 21 7 31 END, 3RD QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: FLORIDA ST - TD, CHRISTIAN PONDER 3 YD RUN (
    KICK), 6:29. FLORIDA ST 7-0
    GEORGIA TECH - FG, SCOTT BLAIR 31 YD, 8:26.
    FLORIDA ST 7-3
    FLORIDA ST - FG, GRAHAM GANO 29 YD, 12:06.
    FLORIDA ST

    Nov 1 5:58 PM


  • NCAAF
    FLORIDA ST (16) 20
    GEORGIA TECH 31 11:11 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    Florida State 20, Georgia Tech 31  3rd - 11:11Nov 1 5:37 PM


  • NCAAF HALFTIME
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA ST (16) 10 10 20
    GEORGIA TECH 3 21 24 HALFTIME
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: FLORIDA ST - TD, CHRISTIAN PONDER 3 YD RUN (
    KICK), 6:29. FLORIDA ST 7-0
    GEORGIA TECH - FG, SCOTT BLAIR 31 YD, 8:26.
    FLORIDA ST 7-3
    FLORIDA ST - FG, GRAHAM GANO 29 YD, 12:06.
    FLORIDA ST 10-3
    2ND

    Florida State 20, Georgia Tech 24  HalfNov 1 5:05 PM


  • NCAAF
    FLORIDA ST (16) 17
    GEORGIA TECH 24 2:38 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Florida State 17, Georgia Tech 24  2nd - 2:38Nov 1 4:55 PM


  • NCAAF
    FLORIDA ST (16) 10
    GEORGIA TECH 10 12:02 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Florida State 10, Georgia Tech 10  2nd - 12:02Nov 1 4:27 PM


  • NCAAF END, 1ST QTR
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA ST (16) 10 10
    GEORGIA TECH 3 3 END, 1ST QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: FLORIDA ST - TD, CHRISTIAN PONDER 3 YD RUN (
    KICK), 6:29. FLORIDA ST 7-0
    GEORGIA TECH - FG, SCOTT BLAIR 31 YD, 8:26.
    FLORIDA ST 7-3
    FLORIDA ST - FG, GRAHAM GANO 29 YD, 12:06.
    FLORIDA ST

    Florida State 10, Georgia Tech 3  End of 1stNov 1 4:14 PM


  • NCAAF
    FLORIDA ST (16) 7
    GEORGIA TECH 3 5:40 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Florida State 7, Georgia Tech 3  1st - 5:40Nov 1 4:02 PM