Saturday, August 30, 2014
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Georgia Tech running back Tony Zenon (9), a former Deerfield-Windsor standout, and Wofford’s Brody Hingst (49) watch an overthrown ball intended for Zenon during the second quarter at Bobby Dodd Stadium on Saturday. (Reuters)
ATLANTA — Justin Thomas passed for 282 yards and found DeAndre Smelter for two touchdowns as Georgia Tech pulled away in the final minutes for a 38-19 victory over Wofford on Saturday.
Thomas completed 11-of-15 passes and Smelter finished with five receptions for 132 yards, the two hooking up for third-quarter scores of 19 and 71 yards after Georgia Tech (1-0) held a 10-9 lead at halftime. Zach Laskey rushed for 70 yards and two touchdowns for the Yellow Jackets, and Thomas added 71 yards on the ground.
Ray Smith rushed for 108 yards - 92 coming on a touchdown run with 51 seconds left in the first half - for Wofford (0-1), which drew within 24-19 early in the fourth quarter. Quarterback Evan Jacks added 89 yards rushing on 13 carries.
Harrison Butker’s 30-yard field goal on the final play of the first half gave Georgia Tech a 10-9 advantage, and Thomas hit Smelter on a 19-yard touchdown to cap an 11-play, 72-yard drive to open the second half. After Wofford’s David Marvin kicked a 51-yard field goal with 4:27 left in the quarter, Smelter hauled in Thomas’ pass on the opening play of the ensuing possession at the Wofford 35, slipping a tackle and weaving his way into the end zone for a 71-yard touchdown and a 24-12 Georgia Tech lead.
Wofford answered with a 16-play, 75-yard march, pulling within 24-19 with 9:49 remaining on Octavius Harden’s 4-yard run. Laskey’s second touchdown of the day with 8:34 to play capped a quick 80-yard Georgia Tech drive and re-established a 12-point lead, and Synjyn Days scored from 4 yards out with 1:34 left to round out the scoring.
GAME NOTEBOOK: Georgia Tech won its eighth consecutive home opener and recorded its 24th straight victory against a FCS school. … Marvin’s 51-yard field goal is the second-longest in Wofford history and Smith’s 92-yard touchdown is the fifth-longest in program history. … Laskey scored on a 4-yard run in the first quarter.