October 15, 2011

South Carolina comeback

STARKVILLE, Miss., - Mississippi State controlled Saturday's game for over 56 minutes.

But the Bulldogs were unable to finish off the upset of 15th-ranked South Carolina. The Gamecocks scored the game winning touchdown with 3:50 left on the clock and held on for a 14-12 win in front of 55,418 at Davis Wade Stadium.

"I give South Carolina credit," said MSU head coach Dan Mullen. "They showed a lot of resilience. They showed why they're a top-15 team, one of the best in the country. They make plays in key moments of the game."

MSU held the Gamecocks playmakers Marcus Lattimore and Alshon Jeffrey in check most of the afternoon but it was Jeffrey brought down a Connor Shaw jump ball for the go-ahead score late in the fourth quarter.

"I thought we did well," Mullen said. "You hold a back like Marcus Lattimore to 39 yards rushing and that's a pretty good day. Alshon Jeffrey had five catches for 24 yards. That's a pretty good day. With the talent that team has, I think our guys overall did really well throughout the course of the game."

South Carolina, who became bowl eligible at 6-1 with the win, finished with 289 yards of offense. The Gamecocks had 179 yards through the air and another 110 on the ground.

"It was a struggle," said South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier. "We had a bunch of bad plays, but somehow or another Connor found Alshon on the jump ball. We had been trying to get the jump ball thrown all day and he finally threw it perfectly instead of out of the ballpark like the earlier one."

Shaw completed 20-of-28 passing on his first SEC road start for 155 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions.

"I didn't handle the pressure as well as I should have," Shaw said. "But I played better in the second half."

Lattimore, the SEC's leading rusher, was limited to 39 yards on 17 carries but did reach the end zone once. Nick Jones grabbed four balls for 45 yards.

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