Saturday, October 25, 2008

No. 7 Georgia Impressive In 52-38 Win Over LSU

Despite ESPN's always lame predictions of LSU topping Georgia with little effort (these guys really need to get a better gig), Georgia showed why they are still a threat in SEC and in the BCS.

Georgia took the lead 20 seconds into the game and never relinquished it, beating defending national champion LSU 52-38 at Tiger Stadium on Saturday.

The wild win was Georgia’s most impressive of the season and set up a showdown in Jacksonville next Saturday against Florida, which is tied with the Bulldogs for the SEC East lead.

No. 7 Georgia scored more points against No. 13 LSU than it had scored in any of its four SEC games this season. In fact, the Dogs scored more points against the defending champs than they scored in the season opener against Georgia Southern (45).

The Bulldogs took a 7-0 lead Saturday on linebacker Darryl Gamble’s interception and 40-yard return for a touchdown on the Tigers’ first play. About 3-1/2 hours later, Gamble intercepted another pass and returned it 53 yards for a touchdown, putting Georgia ahead 52-31. Gamble’s two interception returns for touchdowns tied an NCAA record for linebackers.

Georgia led 24-17 at the half, scoring as many points in two quarters at LSU as in the full game the week before against Vanderbilt in Sanford Stadium, and led 38-24 after three quarters.

After LSU’s first possession produced seven points for Georgia, the Tigers held on to the ball on their next possession and drove 72 yards in 10 plays, the last one a 10-yard touchdown pass from Jarrett Lee to Brandon LaFell, to tie the game at 7.

Finally getting the ball on offense, Georgia answered with a similar touchdown drive: 78 yards in 14 plays and six-plus minutes, including a 22-yard Matthew Stafford-to-Michael Moore pass on third-and-10 and a six-yard Stafford-to- Mohamed Massaquoi pass on third-and-5.

Third-string fullback Fred Munzenmaier finished the drive by scoring from the 1 — the second carry and the second touchdown of his Georgia career. The Bulldogs increased their lead to 21-7 after forcing an LSU punt. A 71-yard drive required only four plays, the first one a 47-yard run by Knowshon Moreno, who was sprung by a big Brannan Southerland block. A five-yard Stafford-to-Kenneth Harris pass, on the first play of the second quarter, completed the drive.

LSU took little time to reduce Georgia’s lead from 21-7 to 21-17. A 51-yard field goal by Colt David made it 21-10 — and made David LSU’s career scoring leader. Then, after a Georgia punt, LSU again drove down the field, scoring on a 2-yard run by Charles Scott.

The final points of the first half, with 1:36 remaining, came on a 50-yard field goal by Georgia’s Blair Walsh, completing a drive that began after Reshad Jones intercepted a LSU pass at the Bulldog' 35. Three plays before Walsh’s kick, A.J. Green ran for 22 yards on an end-around.

Green, who entered the game as the SEC leader in receiving yardage, did not catch a pass in the first half. But one play after dropping one in the third quarter, he caught a 49-yard touchdown throw from Stafford to give Georgia a 31-17 lead. After LSU’s David missed a field goal, Georgia got the ball back at its 32. On the first play, Moreno bolted 68 yards for a touchdown. The run gave Georgia a 38-17 lead with four minutes to go in the third quarter. Aided by a personal-foul penalty against Georgia, LSU quickly got within 38-24. Scott followed a 42-yard run with a 1-yard run for a touchdown.

LSU still couldn’t stop Georgia, though. A seven-yard run by Stafford capped a seven-play, 63-yard drive that made it 45-24 with 10:49 to play. LSU cut the lead to 45-31 and threatened to move within a touchdown before the Bulldogs stopped the Tigers on downs at the Georgia 13 with about five minutes to play.


Source: WSB Atlanta

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