Turnovers Help No. 9 Georgia Beat No. 11 LSU, 52-38
LSU Sports Interactive
BATON ROUGE -- LSU redshirt freshman Jarrett Lee tossed three touchdowns passes, but also gave up 17 points on three interceptions as No. 9 Georgia wasn't to be denied on Saturday at Tiger Stadium, 52-38.
LSU (5-2, 3-2 SEC), playing at home for the first time in nearly a month, fell behind early and couldn't recover.
Georgia (7-1, 4-1 SEC) was one step ahead of the Tigers throughout the afternoon, getting big plays whenever LSU got within a touchdown or two.
The crowd of 92,904 was the second-largest in Tiger Stadium history, six fans short of the record.
Return specialist Trindon Holliday gave the Tigers positive field position with 164 kickoff return yards. However, it was the fact that he had to return seven kicks that cost LSU.
Georgia's Knowshon Moreno led the way with 163 yards rushing, including two long runs of 47 and 68 yards, the second which went for a touchdown that capped 17-unanswered points and gave Georgia a 38-17 lead in the third quarter.
Moreno's running was complimented by quarterback Matthew Stafford's play. The junior was 17-of-26 passing for 249 yards and two touchdowns. He was sacked only once and didn't throw an interception.
Freshman receiver A.J. Green led Georgia with 89 yards on three catches with a 49-yard touchdown. Michael Moore added 38 yards on three receptions.
LSU used 208 fourth-quarter yards to outgain Georgia, 497-443.
Georgia won the toss and deferred its decision to the second half. After a 24-yard return by Trindon Holliday to the LSU 37, the Tigers came out in a five-wide receiver formation.
On the first play of the game, the Tigers made a mistake that cost seven points. With an empty backfield Lee's pass intended for LaFell was intercepted by Georgia linebacker Darryl Gamble. Gamble came from the middle of the field, stepped in front of LaFell near the left hash marks and ran 40 yards for a touchdown.
Georgia led 7-0 only 20 seconds into the game.
Unphased by the turn of events, the LSU offense went back to work from its 28-yard line. Scott came out of the backfield to pickup a 6-yard gain and a key first down. Then, a first-down catch by wide receiver Chris Mitchell setup a pair of first-down runs of 17 and 11 yards by Scott to the Georgia 8-yard line.
On third-and-goal from the 10, Georgia brought their blitz against Lee, who picked it up and had the perfect play called. Lee tossed a middle screen to LaFell who dodged a defender and crossed the goal line to tie the game at 7-7 with 9:41 left in the first quarter.
LSU forced Stafford and Georgia into three third-downs on the next drive but were unable to stop the Bulldogs' first offensive possession.
Georgia's longest scoring drive of the season (6 minutes, 24 seconds) lasted 14 plays and culminated with a 1-yard run by sophomore fullback Fred Menzenmaier. It was Menzenmaier's second career touchdown on his second career carry.
After three-and-out by the Tigers, Georgia's potent offense put the Bulldogs up by two touchdowns with a quick drive through the middle of the LSU defense. Moreno sliced 47 yards on the first play before Stafford connected with split end Demiko Goodman for 16 yards to the LSU 8. On the first play of the second quarter, Stafford threw the fade route to the right corner and split end Kenneth Harris came down with it for a 5-yard score.
Georgia led 21-7 with 14:55 left in the half.
The Tigers offense was able to get on track once again, but the drive stalled after gains of 15 and 11 yards by Murphy into Bulldogs territory. At the Georgia 34, a pass interference penalty against Georgia was waved off because the ball was tipped at the line.
LSU settled for a 51-yard field goal by Colt David, three points that gave the Tigers placekicker the school's career scoring record.
LSU trailed 21-10 with 11:37 left in the half.
Georgia's ensuing possession was once again quick, however, this time the Bulldogs were forced to punt for the first time. Consecutive incomplete passes to Green fell incomplete, and a third-down completion to Moreno came up short of the first down marker.
After a 60-yard punt that went into the LSU endzone, Lee completed a 20-yard pass to Richard Dickson to the LSU 46-yard line. Gains of 7 and 5 yards by Scott moved the ball into the Bulldogs side of the field. Then, Byrd's reception on the left side appears to go for a first down until the speedy receiver shook two defenders and ran to the 2-yard line. The 35-yard gain setup a 2-yard touchdown run by Scott on the next play.
LSU trailed 21-17 with 7:23 left in the half.
Another Georgia punt gave LSU the opportunity to add a score before the half, but instead Lee's first-down pass was intercepted along the right sideline.
The Bulldogs took advantage of the turnover once again, adding a 50-yard field goal by Blair Walsh with 1:36 to play.
Georgia led at halftime, 24-17.
The teams traded punts to start the half. Stafford and the Bulldogs second drive started at their 28-yard line. A false start put Georgia behind in down-and-distance, but Stafford recovered with throws of 10 and 6 yards for a first down. On third-and-10 from midfield, the Tigers came with a blitz, but Stafford released its pass just in time and found Green behind the Tigers' man coverage for a 49-yard catch and run.
Georgia pushed its lead back to two touchdowns, 31-17, with 8:21 to play.
After a fake punt by Josh Jasper kept, Hatch and the Tigers went to the ground game to move into Georgia territory, but an intentional grounding penalty on the LSU quarterback cost 17 yards. David's 49-yard attempt after a false start was missed to the right and the Tigers came up empty.
On the next play, Moreno couldn't find a hole in the middle of the line, but bounced to the left and found daylight. He broke two tackles near the line and then dashed 68 yards for a touchdown that put the Tigers down by three touchdowns, 38-17, with 3:55 to play.
LSU wasn't going down without a fight, as Trindon Holliday returned the kickoff 25 yards and then crossed midfield on a late hit penalty against the Bulldogs. Two plays later, Scott rumbled 42 yards to the Georgia 1 and then scored on the next play. LSU's answer cut the lead to 38-24 with 2:47 to play in the third quarter.
Depsite a 48-yard pass by Stafford to tight end Aron White, Georgia was stopped without points. Rather than attempting to pin LSU deep with a punt, Georgia tried a 55-yard field goal that was missed short and right.
The Tigers took over at the 38 but went backward and punted.
Once again, Georgia took advantage of the sitution, marching 63 yards to another touchdown and putting the game out of reach with 10:49 to play. Stafford ran for a 7-yard touchdown on third-and-6 to put the Bulldogs ahead, 45-24.
Though a long run by Williams was taken away by penalty, the running back came out of the backfield and got behind the Georgia defense for 66 yards to the 6-yard line. On the next play, Williams took another pass from Lee and scored to bring the Tigers within 14, 45-31, with 8:47 to play.
A quick three-and-out by Georgia gave the Tigers a chance to get within a touchdown with 6:24 to play.
A 22-yard run by Williams was followed by completions of 7 and 14 yards to Byrd and Dickson, respectively. But, Lee fumbled the next snap in shotgun and his second-down pass was nearly intercepted. After a third-and-14 pass was completed to wide receiver Terrance Toliver for 10 yards, Georgia called a timeout to setup a blitz. Lee wasn't able to get his footing on the blitz and his pass went out of the reach of LaFell coming from left to right.
Though Georgia was denied a first down and punted, Lee threw his third interception on the next play and Gamble again returned it 53 yards for a touchdown.
With 2:27 left, a 43-yard touchdown pass from Lee to LaFell added to the Tigers changed the margin but not the outcome.
LSU's onside kick was recovered by Georgia.
LSU returns to action on Saturday, Nov. 1, when they play host to Tulane at 7 p.m. CDT. The game will be televised on a pay-per-view basis on TigerVision. Contact your local cable or satellite provider to inquire about ordering.
LSU Game Notes
1. LSU’s game captains were 93 Tyson Jackson, 70 Ciron Black, 3 Chad Jones and 6 Colt David.
2. Georgia won the toss and deferred to the second half. LSU will receive the opening kickoff.
3. Tigers extending their notable consecutive starts streak tonight were: LT Ciron Black (34), DE Tyson Jackson (34), LG Herman Johnson (31) and C Brett Helms (25).
4. LSU’s first offensive drive resulted in an interception for a touchdown. In seven games this year on opening drives, the Tigers have punted three times, scored touchdowns twice, made a field goal and thrown an interception.
5. LSU opponents have punted three times, turned the ball over on downs once, kicked a field goal and scored two touchdowns on first offensive drives this season.
6. Today’s attendance of 92, 904 is the second largest crowd in the history of Tiger Stadium, only seven people shy of breaking the stadium record.
7. Josh Jasper’s fake punt for a first down in the third quarter was the first successful fake punt for the Tigers since Patrick Fisher converted one in the 2007 SEC Championship Game versus Tennessee.
8. LSU has posted at least 21 points in 29 straight games.
9. WR Brandon LaFell has now caught a pass in 22 straight games dating back to the 2007 Sugar Bowl versus Notre Dame.
a. LaFell hauled in his fourth touchdown catch of the season and 10th of his career on a 10-yard pass from Jarrett Lee with 9:41 remaining in the first quarter.
b. LaFell pulled in his fifth touchdown catch of the season and 11th of his career on a 43-yard strike from Jarrett Lee with 2:27 remaining in the game.
10. WR Demetrius Byrd has now caught a pass in 17 straight games dating back to last year’s Tulane game on Sept. 29.
11. QB Jarrett Lee connected for his ninth touchdown pass of the season on a 10-yard throw to Brandon LaFell with 9:41 left in the first quarter.
a. Lee set a career-high with three touchdown passes. He had thrown for two TDs on four occasions.
12. PK Colt David shattered the LSU all-time career scoring mark with a 51-yard field goal with 11:37 remaining in the second quarter. David broke former All-American Kevin Faulk’s old mark of 318 points. With David’s eight points today, David stands at 324 for his career (46 FG, 180 PATs, 1 touchdown).
a. David’s 51-yard field goal was a career-long, besting his previous long of 49 yards at Alabama in 2007.
b. For his career, David has 13 field goals over 40 yards on 22 attempts. That ranks second all-time in school history.
c. David now ranks ninth in SEC history in career points by a kicker and eighth in SEC history in career points.
d. With his five PATs today, David has connected on 180 consecutive PATs.
13. RB Charles Scott tallied his ninth and 10th rushing TDs of the season and the 19th and 20th of his career on a 2-yard TD run with 7:23 in the second quarter and a 1-yard run with 2:47 left in the third quarter.
a. For Scott, it was his fifth multi-touchdown game of the season and eighth of his career.
b. Scott also recorded his fifth 100-yard rushing game of the season and sixth of his career with his 144 yards against Georgia.
14. DE Rahim Alem recorded his team-leading fifth sack of the season and seventh of his career early in the second quarter.
15. RB Keiland Williams recorded his second career receiving TD on a 6-yard throw from Jarrett Lee with 8:47 left in the fourth quarter. His other receiving TD came against Auburn in 2007.
Georgia Post-Game Notes
Success In Red Stick: Georgia (7-1, 4-1 SEC) scored the most points in school history against the Tigers overall and in Baton Rouge on Saturday with a 52-38 win over #11 LSU. It was the most points by the Bulldogs in an SEC game since 2004 when it beat Kentucky 62-17 in Lexington. The Bulldogs’ victory matches the longest winning streak in school history of three straight vs. LSU. Georgia’s other three-game winning streaks were in 1949 and 1999.
Winning With Richt: Georgia improved to 28-4 in an opponent’s stadium including 10-2 against ranked foes under Mark Richt since 2001. The Bulldogs never trailed today and improved to 61-7 when scoring first and 61-5 when leading at the half. Overall, Richt is now 79-20 in his eighth season.
Gamble Tied NCAA Mark: Drives: Georgia sophomore Darryl Gamble tied an NCAA record for Interception Returns for Touchdowns by a linebacker in game with two. He had a 40-yarder for a TD on LSU's first play of the game. Then in the 4th quarter, he had a 53-yarder for a TD. Also, he had a career-high 13 tackles, one behind sophomore linebacker Rennie Curran who had a team-high 14. Gamble’s two INT returns for TDs tied a Georgia record as well, matching Jake Scott vs. Kentucky in 1968.
INT To Start: Georgia scored 17 points off of two turnovers. Darryl Gamble grabbed his first career interception on the game’s first play from the line of scrimmage and returned it 40 yards for the first touchdown of his career. This was the second INT return for a TD of the season after redshirt sophomore DE Demarcus Dobbs returned an INT 78 yards for a TD against Central Michigan. This was also the second game in a row that Georgia had an INT return for a TD after Tim Jennings had a 15-yard INT return for a TD during the Bulldogs’ 34-14 win over the Tigers in the 2005 SEC Championship Game. Redshirt sophomore FS Reshad Jones picked off his team-leading third INT of the season (fifth of his career) late in the second quarter. His INT halted the Tigers’ drive at the Georgia 35-yard line and set up Blair Walsh’s 50-yard field goal with 1:36 left in the opening half to give Georgia a 24-17 lead.
Drives: The Bulldogs had their longest and shortest drives of the year against the Tigers. Georgia had its longest TD-scoring drive of the year in the first quarter on a 14-play, 78-yard drive that lasted 6:24. Then, the Bulldogs registered their 11th TD-scoring drive under two minutes after they scored in 13 seconds after TB Knowshon Moreno scored a 68-yard TD on the first play of the Bulldogs drive late in the third quarter.
Bulldogs Continue Tough Stretch: Georgia’s matchup against No. 11 LSU was the second of three games versus Top 25 teams in a row. The Bulldogs beat #22 Vanderbilt 24-14 last week in Athens and face #5 Florida (6-1, 4-1 SEC) in Jacksonville on Nov. 1. The Gators, who were the 2006 BCS champions, will also give Georgia its second former BCS champion in a row since LSU won the BCS crown 2007.
Passing Points: Freshman FLK A.J. Green tied his career long with a 49-yard TD reception with 8:21 left in the third quarter. Green (3 rec., 89 yards) has caught at least one catch in every game this season and the TD mentioned above was his first catch of the game. Senior SE Kenneth Harris snagged his first touchdown grab of the season on a 5-yard pass from Matthew Stafford at the beginning of the second quarter. Senior SE Mohamed Massaquoi pushed his consecutive streak with at least one catch to 29 games after finishing with three catches for 16 yards. The Bulldogs also had redshirt freshman TE Aron White catch his 1st catch on a 48-yarder with Stafford late in the third quarter.
Moreno Has His Third Straight 100-Yarder: Sophomore TB Knowshon Moreno had his 11th career 100-yard rushing game after going for a 163 yards on 21 carries with 1 TD. Moreno now has 2,259 yards for his career. He is the 13th Bulldog in school history to eclipse 2,000 yards for his career. Moreno’s tally ranks 8th in school history. Moreno had his longest rush of the season and the second longest of his career on a 68-yard touchdown late in the third quarter. Moreno also had a 47-yard run in the first quarter.
Walsh Drills Another 50-Yarder/Big Day For Mimbs: Freshman PK Blair Walsh connected on a 50-yard field goal with 1:36 left in the first half. Walsh is now 2-for-5 on field goals of 50 yards or longer. His first career FG was a 52-yarder against Ga. Southern on his 1st career attempt. He missed a 55-yarder later today. Senior Brian Mimbs had the 3rd best day every by a punter, averaging 50.4 yards on 5 punts.
Injury Report: Two regular starters - senior MLB Dannell Ellerbe (knee), senior TE Tripp Chandler (shoulder) – did not play for the third week in a row. Junior split end Kris Durham returned after being out the past two games. He had one catch for 10 yards.
Up Next: The Bulldogs (7-1, 4-1 SEC) travel to Jacksonville, Fla.., to face No. 5 Florida on Saturday, Nov. 1. Georgia leads the overall series 47-37-2. The Bulldogs topped the Gators 42-30 in 2007.
LSU POSTGAME QUOTES
LSU HEAD COACH LES MILES
“The story is the mistakes. You can’t make mistakes. When you play a quality opponent, you cannot give them turnovers. You can’t uncover people in coverage. You can’t let runs that should be tackled go untackled. Our football team has to learn that. That’s my job. I promise you I will go about teaching it. Guys have bad days. Those bad days can’t sink the team. You can have bad days and still give your team a chance to win. I told our team that we played a very quality team today, and we never pressured them. Again, the first play from scrimmage, we give them seven (points). We come back and get our seven, and surely, we would have liked to have taken a lead in this game and see how they played from behind. Again, if you make mistakes, that benefit of home field and that benefit of pressuring the opponent doesn’t happen.
“Certainly, there is work to do. Our quarterbacks, not tackling (Knowshon) Moreno, who, in my opinion, we should have maybe gotten him stopped, and some mistakes in the secondary. We can play better. There were some positives. (Placekicker) Colt David takes over the all-time leading scoring record here. That’s great for him. I promise you he’s sick; we all are. I told my team another thing too, that the answer is going to come from within this room and the fact that’s it’s going to be about a team, and it’s not going to be any other way. Everybody is going to have to further identify their role and have them play very positively and efficiently within that role. That’s where we’re headed.”
On if he felt good about making the score 21-17 in the second quarter...
“Yeah, I thought our team could move the football. That was not the issue. The issue was making mistakes that allowed our opponent to score and score in the short field and score touchdowns. The first 10 points that they got was one thing. Then, the next seven, certainly was another. It’s the same issue. We’ve got to get it fixed. We’ll work at that.”
On playing QB Andrew Hatch a lot in the second half...
“It was a different hand and how they played him differently than they played (Jarrett) Lee. We thought it might give us an advantage or two.”
On if he was disappointed in the defensive line not getting more pressure on the quarterback...
“The issue is the rushing yardage. If you give up the rushing yardage, you’re not going to put the pressure on the quarterback. As long as they had the lead, there’s little reason for them to spread you out and just toss it over the line and allow us to get in the backfield. It’s hard to pressure a team that is running the football pretty well.”
LSU OFFENSIVE PLAYER QUOTES
On the game ...
“It was a real tough day. When you play good offense and good defense just sometimes it doesn’t workout. That’s what happens when you play a great team. We weren’t consistent enough to take over the game when we had the chance.”
On the loss at Tiger Stadium ...
“It’s very disappointing; we never like to lose in our own house. It’s a real deep gut feeling. We have to turn around and look at ourselves and figure out who we really are. It’s about pride and it really hurt our pride with them coming in our house and beating us like that. ”
On getting ready for next week...
“Of course we are. We have some games left in the season. The season is not over for us. We are going to put it behind us, it will be hard but we are a good team and we will learn from our mistakes.”
QB Jarrett Lee
On the game...
“It was tough. We need to pick our heads up. We are going to do what we did with Florida and come back next week to execute right.”
On watching film and learning from the mistakes...
“There were a lot of things that went wrong and things we need to fix. The good thing is we get to watch film tomorrow and we will come back better.”
On putting the loss behind them...
“It’s just part of football. You win some and lose some. Unfortunately, we lost today and we need to put it behind us. We need to stay positive but keep this in the back of our minds. We need to get back to work and prepare for the next games.”
LSU DEFENSIVE PLAYER QUOTES
On how the team will respond ...
“It was a very difficult loss for us, and we are frustrated. We have great character. We just have to keep on trying and finish strong this season.”
On getting back into the game in the 2nd quarter ...
“Like I said, we are frustrated. We stopped them on big plays, but we made mistakes on big plays. We cannot play that way with a team of that caliber. We messed up and we know that.”
On how well Georgia’s quarterback played ...
“They have a great quarterback. Stuff like this will happen, and they had great protection. We have to make plays on third downs and come to compete.”
DE Rahim Alem
On how well Georgia’s offense did ...
“Upfront, they made it very difficult for us. The quarterback was very well protected. They also ran the ball very well, and that hurt us.”
On what the team will focus on next ...
“We must come to fight. We are in the corner right now and we have to get out of it. We lost to two great football teams. Obviously, we are not proud of the way we lost, so from here on out we cannot afford any mistakes.”
GEORGIA HEAD COACH MARK RICHT QUOTES
“What a blessing and great game for our football team, program and fans. I’m thrilled for everyone that took this long trip. I loved the band being here and my wife being here and my son and my father. It was a great memory. We played a team that is one of the finest in America, certainly one of the winningest program in the Southeastern Conference in the last five years and they’ve won a couple of national championships as of late. We just did enough to win. It was fantastic and I’m very thankful.”
On Mathew Stafford’s performance...
“His first pass of the day, he had an open receiver and missed him and was a little down about it, but he got right back in the saddle and started throwing strikes. I think our line did a fantastic job of allowing only one sack throughout the game as many times as we threw it, which is fantastic considering who they were trying to block. Matt is really mature. He is staying in there when everything is flying around him and focusing downfield and throwing strikes. That is what he has got to do. That is the way he is going to make Georgia better and that is the way he is going make a living for many years to come, I imagine. He’s doing as fine as I’ve ever seen him do it and he could have done it much better than anyone I’ve ever coached tonight.”
On the offensive line’s performance ...
“Let’s applaud the offensive line. I’m not going to sit here and say that they dominated the game because they probably didn’t, but they fought like mad and gave Mathew [Stafford] enough time when needed and gave Knowshon [Moreno] room to run. At times, they got whipped too. The local newspaper had two gloves. It had a glove of LSU and boxing glove of Georgia and said it would be a heavyweight fight. I agreed with what the paper was trying to say. Two outstanding programs were about to start throwing punches at each another. Both teams threw a bunch. I felt like the team that could not only punch, but handle a few shots in the mouth. I think the line did that and that our team did that in general.”
On the opening play ...
“You never know how a game is going to go. You don’t know if the team is ready or not and when you get an interception for a touchdown on the first play it definitely energizes your football team. I think we were energized and ready to play anyway, but when something like that happens it definitely gives you a boost of energy and adrenaline. I’m glad that happened for Darryl Gamble and us.”
GEORGIA OFFENSIVE PLAYER QUOTES
Matthew Stafford, QB
On if he thought this game was a signature win ...
“I think it was a big win for us obviously. LSU is a good football team and we had all facets of the football game show up today. Our special teams did great. They (LSU) have great return men and we did a good job containing them. Obviously our defense put up points for us and did a good job holding them (LSU) in check.”
On winning in an atmosphere like Tiger Stadium ...
“We knew it was going to be a tough game. They’ve won 30 straight here, and we knew it was going to be a tough environment to play in, but I thought we did a good job adjusting and came out with a win.”
On his feelings of putting up 52 points ...
“We go into every game trying to score every time we get the ball. That’s our thought process and what we work towards, and we were able to move the ball well on them (LSU). We got some big plays when we needed them today. Knowshon (Moreno) had some good runs for us and some guys made some good plays for us catching the football and that’s what got us going.”
On how he handled LSU’s blitz ...
“They didn’t heat us up too much. When they did blitz they played a lot of man coverage and we did a good job of winning on the outside. Overall, we just did a good job of executing.”
Knowshon Moreno, RB
On his cell phone gesture to the student section after a touchdown ...
“It was nothing, I was just having fun. It was more about celebrating with my teammates more than anything.”
On the week of preparing for LSU’s defense ...
“It was really focused. We were focused on the task ahead of us. We just made sure that everything we did, we did it crisp and it paid off for us tonight.”
On if he though the Georgia offense exploited any weaknesses in the LSU defense ...
“I don’t know if it was anything specific. I just think all the guys were really making plays and playing tough football. It was just a good day overall.”
GEORGIA DEFENSIVE PLAYER QUOTES
Sophomore LB Darryl Gamble
On defense’s performance today...
“I think there were some missed opportunities. We weren’t lined up correctly today; we were outside. It was hard because they had a quick offense, and their tempo was quick. That’s why they got the big plays that they did, but as a whole, I think we did pretty well.”
On his interception to open the game...
“We went over that play a lot. We watched it a lot on film. When LSU was coming up in that slant formation, I read it. Coach Martinez prepped me for it. I was ready, and I came up big. “
On the road to national championship...
“We’ve got a good team, and we’ve got some good SEC opponents. That gives us a little more leeway because it’s always a hard game no matter who we play. I think this win puts us up high again.”
Junior DB Asher Allen
On next week’s game against Florida...
“It just gives us confidence going against a team that is similar as far as speed and has athletes all over the field like LSU does. We know that Florida has tremendous athletes.”
On plays on both sides of ball...
“I think that (Matthew) Stafford and AJ (Green) made great plays, and the offensive line was able to make holes that Knowshon (Merino) was able to run through. I think the defense did a great job today with stopping LSU’s running backs. I think we were able to make the plays we needed to make today to win.”
On Darryl Gamble’s key interception at the end of the game...
“Darryl’s a guy who always comes to practice and works really hard. You saw he ended the game with a big time play. Ending the game like that, you see him do it in practice, and he took it to the big game. Big time players make big time plays in games like this.”
On interception opening the game...
“That was a shock even to the defense. What a way to start it off, and then ending the game off like that too was great.”