Georgia
17Auburn
17 - 13 Final
  for this game

Georgia holds off Auburn with late defensive stand

Nov 16, 2008 - 12:08 AM AUBURN, Alabama (Ticker) -- It took a late red-zone stand from a struggling defense, but 12th-ranked Georgia managed to maintain its recent dominance over Auburn.

The Bulldogs thwarted a potential game-winning drive, forcing incompletions on the final two plays to escape with a 17-13 victory, their third consecutive triumph over the SEC rival Tigers.

Matthew Stafford threw a pair of touchdown passes - including a go-ahead strike to AJ Green in the fourth quarter - to lead Georgia to its second victory in a row.

"Neither team played good enough to win. We both had enough mistakes to lose," Georgia head coach Mark Richt said. "It wasn't the prettiest game played by any means, it just comes down to sticking together and persevering."

The lead changed hands twice in the fourth quarter and nearly shifted again in the final minute, but a late drive orchestrated by Auburn sophomore quarterback Kodi Burns fell just short.

"It was tough," Burns said. "We fought, we just didn't come out with the win. We really fought hard and I am proud of the whole offense. We didn't make enough plays."

Despite facing a disappointing Auburn squad that is in danger of having its eight-year bowl streak come to an end, the Bulldogs had trouble putting the Tigers away all afternoon. Georgia entered the contest allowing the second-most points in the SEC and had given up at least 38 points three weeks in a row.

Burns certainly seemed to have no trouble down the stretch, converting a pair of critical third downs on the final drive with runs of 14 and 17 yards. But he finally hit a wall in the red zone.

"It was awesome for the defense," Richt said. "We put them on the spot to finish the game and get the stops down at the very end."

The Tigers (5-6, 2-5 SEC West) had marched 66 yards in 12 plays, but faced a fourth-and-1 with seven seconds remaining. On that final play, the pocket quickly collapsed around Burns, whose desperation heave to the back corner of the end zone sailed long as the Bulldogs (9-2, 6-2 East) survived to remain unbeaten on the road this season.

"We were saying in the huddle, 'We're good, we're good.' We weren't going to give up," linebacker Dannell Ellerbe said. "We were going to fight and find a way to win."

The tight finish capped a back-and-forth final quarter. Auburn took a lead on Mario Fannin's 35-yard touchdown rush early in the fourth, but the Bulldogs answered quickly - taking advantage of prime field position as they started the ensuing drive in Auburn territory thanks to a pair of penalties.

Seven plays later, Stafford delivered a 17-yard strike over the middle to a leaping Green, who pulled it in for what proved to be the game-winning score.

"It was a play we have been working on, we have run it a couple of times during the season," Stafford said. "Earlier in the season, we ran the exact same play and he was wide open in the end zone but the ball was dropped. I'm glad (Green) got a chance to run it again. He made a great catch. I didn't make such a great throw, but he did a good job of going up and getting it."

While the Tigers fell short on their last possession, their options were limited thanks to an early mistake by kicker Wes Byrum. Burns helped give Auburn the lead with a 52-yard touchdown pass to Fannin, but Byrum missed the extra point.

"The kicking game hasn't been with us all year long," Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville said. "We haven't been able to take our opportunities when they are there. That has been a big difference in three or four ballgames. Hopefully, it will turn around for us in the next game."

That single point may have proved pivotal - had Byrum connected, the Tigers could have attempted a game-tying field goal at the end of the game instead of being forced to go for the end zone.

Stafford completed 15-of-24 passes for 214 yards, while Knowshon Moreno rushed for 131 yards and added a 35-yard touchdown catch.

Fannin had 108 total yards, while Burns was 16-for-30 for 180 yards.








  • NCAAF FINAL
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    GEORGIA (13) 0 7 3 7 17
    AUBURN 6 0 0 7 13 FINAL
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: AUBURN - TD, MARIO FANNIN 52 YD PASS FROM
    KODI BURNS (PAT FAILED),
    14:46. AUBURN 6-0
    2ND QUARTER: GEORGIA - TD, KNOWSHON MORENO 35 YD PASS
    FROM MATTHEW STAFFORD (BLAIR
    WALSH KICK), 11:52. GEORGIA
    7-6
    3RD

    Nov 15 3:43 PM
  • 81
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 29 roots (Close Finish)

    Georgia(10) 17, Auburn 13  4th - 1:52Nov 15 3:30 PM
  • 52
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 30 roots (Close Finish)

    Georgia(10) 17, Auburn 13  4th - 4:13Nov 15 3:21 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD GEORGIA
    A.J. GREEN 17 YD PASS FROM MATTHEW STAFFORD
    (BLAIR WALSH KICK)
    GEORGIA (13) 17
    AUBURN 13 8:24 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Georgia(10) 17, Auburn 13  4th - 8:24Nov 15 3:12 PM
  • 22
    roots
    RUWTbot Took away 68 roots (Close Finish)

    Georgia(10) 17, Auburn 13  4th - 8:24Nov 15 3:12 PM
  • 90
    roots
    senorpepr Added 5 roots

    Georgia(10) 10, Auburn 13  4th - 10:58Nov 15 3:10 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD AUBURN
    MARIO FANNIN 35 YD RUN
    (MORGAN HULL KICK)
    GEORGIA (13) 10
    AUBURN 13 11:05 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Georgia(10) 10, Auburn 13  4th - 11:05Nov 15 3:00 PM
  • 85
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 75 roots (Upset)

    Georgia(10) 10, Auburn 13  4th - 11:05Nov 15 3:00 PM


  • NCAAF END, 3RD QTR
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    GEORGIA (13) 0 7 3 10
    AUBURN 6 0 0 6 END, 3RD QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: AUBURN - TD, MARIO FANNIN 52 YD PASS FROM
    KODI BURNS (PAT FAILED),
    14:46. AUBURN 6-0
    2ND QUARTER: GEORGIA - TD, KNOWSHON MORENO 35 YD PASS
    FROM MATTHEW STAFFORD (BLAIR
    WALSH KICK), 11:52.

    Nov 15 2:52 PM


  • NCAAF
    FG GEORGIA
    BLAIR WALSH 27 YD
    GEORGIA (13) 10
    AUBURN 6 1:48 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    Georgia(10) 10, Auburn 6  3rd - 1:48Nov 15 2:46 PM


  • NCAAF HALFTIME
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    GEORGIA (13) 0 7 7
    AUBURN 6 0 6 HALFTIME
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: AUBURN - TD, MARIO FANNIN 52 YD PASS FROM
    KODI BURNS (PAT FAILED),
    14:46. AUBURN 6-0
    2ND QUARTER: GEORGIA - TD, KNOWSHON MORENO 35 YD PASS
    FROM MATTHEW STAFFORD (BLAIR
    WALSH KICK), 11:52. GEORGIA

    Nov 15 1:55 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD GEORGIA
    KNOWSHON MORENO 35 YD PASS FROM MATTHEW STAFFORD
    (BLAIR WALSH KICK)
    GEORGIA (13) 7
    AUBURN 6 3:08 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Georgia(10) 7, Auburn 6  2nd - 3:08Nov 15 1:45 PM


  • NCAAF
    GEORGIA (13) 0
    AUBURN 6 0:00 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Nov 15 1:16 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD AUBURN
    MARIO FANNIN 52 YD PASS FROM KODI BURNS
    (PAT FAILED)
    GEORGIA (13) 0
    AUBURN 6 0:14 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Georgia(10) 0, Auburn 6  1st - 0:14Nov 15 1:12 PM
  • 10
    roots
    GREGnKY Added 5 roots

    Georgia(10) vs. AuburnNov 15 9:57 AM
  • 5
    roots
    Lemonman Added 5 roots

    Georgia(10) vs. AuburnNov 15 1:49 AM