Friday, August 31, 2012
Georgia State Panthers falls to South Carolina State 33-6
Georgia State scored on its first possession of the second half, getting a 25-yard field goal from Matt Ehasz to get to within 14-6. But the hosts never got closer.
On the ensuing drive, Cue, who a year ago threw for just 900 yards in nine games, completed all three of his pass attempts, including a 13-yard touchdown toss to Tyler McDonald that put the Bulldogs up 21-6.
In between two Georgia State drives-one that ended on a punt and the other when Matt Ehasz’s 36-yard field goal attempt was wide right-Nick Belcher kicked a pair of field goals from 20 and 27 yards, the last of which capped a 17-play drive and made it 27-6 with just under six minutes to play.
A late touchdown pass helped South Carolina State build a 14-3 halftime lead. With 40 seconds left in the second quarter, Cue led the visiting Bulldogs on a two-play drive, culminating in a 22-yard touchdown toss to McDonald. The junior wide receiver made a great catch, then tight-roped the sideline and reached the end zone.
Georgia State, kicking off its third season and final one under coach Bill Curry, had cut the deficit to 7-3 on a 36-yard field goal by Matt Ehasz. But the Panthers couldn't capitalize after Cue was intercepted for the second time in the half, this time by Brent McClendon with 5:40 to play in the second. Minor's 24-yard attempt hit the right upright to keep it a four-point game.
South Carolina State struck first. On a third-and-seven deep in their own territory, the Bulldogs got a 73-yard touchdown connection from Cue to Lennel Elmore to make it 7-0 just 54 seconds into the game.
Georgia State had a pair of record-breaking plays in the opening half. Senior running back Donald Russell (120 yards on 12 carries) tied teammate Kelton Hill for the fourth-longest run from scrimmage in the Panthers’ three-year history with a 52-yard scamper midway through the first quarter. That gave the Panthers the ball at the South Carolina State 32-yard line, but the drive stalled after three short runs and an incompletion on fourth-and-two.
Punter Matt Hubbard bested his own school record with an 80-yard punt that pinned South Carolina State to its two-yard line. Hubbard’s previous best was a 64-yarder against Texas-San Antonio in October, 2011.
That set up the Panthers’ defense, which came up with a big stop on third-and-two to force a punt. Redshirt-freshman Ben McLane, making his first collegiate start at quarterback, came through with his first big play, hooking up with Danny Williams for a 20-yard completion. It allowed Ehasz to boot his field goal with 6:33 left until halftime.
McLane struggled in his debut. He completed just 7 of 15 passes for 54 yards and was sacked five times. Hill relieved McLane on a number of possessions, and the redshirt-junior was 7 of 13 for 76 yards.
Late in the game, Georgia State was driving when Parris Lee fumbled, Dominique Mitchell recovered and returned it 68 yards for a touchdown and a 33-6 cushion.
COURTESY GEORGIA STATE SPORTS COMMUNICATIONS