(Saturday, October 31st)
Final Score: (11) Georgia Tech 56, Vanderbilt 31
Nashville, TN (Sports Network) - Josh Nesbitt totaled four touchdowns -- two through the air and two on the ground -- and Jonathan Dwyer ran for 186 yards and three scores, as 11th-ranked Georgia Tech turned up the heat late to run away from Vanderbilt with a 56-31 road victory.
Nesbitt was 6-of-13 throwing for 193 yards and ran for 56 more on 16 carries for the Yellow Jackets (8-1), who won their sixth straight game and are zeroing in on an ACC Coastal Division crown.
Roddy Jones rushed for 80 yards and scored while Demaryius Thomas and Embry Peeples each caught a TD pass in the win. The latter gained 117 yards on just two catches while the former made four grabs for 76 yards.
Georgia Tech racked up 404 yards on the ground and 597 yards of offense in the win.
Zac Stacy ran for two scores and totaled 75 yards on just eight carries for the Commodores (2-7), whose struggles this season continued with its losing streak now extended to five games.
Mackenzi Adams was 12-of-22 for 152 yards while Larry Smith threw a TD pass to Warren Norman, who also ran for 60 yards on 11 carries and returned a kick 80 yards for a score.
The game was tied at 28 at halftime and Vanderbilt moved ahead in the opening minutes of the second half on a Ryan Fowler 23-yard field goal.
With just under a minute left in the quarter, Dwyer ran in a three-yard score to give the Yellow Jackets a lead they did not relinquish. It quickly became a 42-31 affair as Jamie Graham coughed up the football on Vandy's next play and Dwyer was back in the end zone with another three-yard score before the end of the frame.
Tech pulled farther away when Nesbitt connected with Peeples on an 87-yard touchdown less than three minutes into the fourth. The Commodores didn't get a chance to respond as Norman fumbled away the kickoff return, leading to a 15- yard scoring run from Jones and a 56-31 advantage with close to 10 minutes remaining.
"I think Georgia Tech has a really outstanding offensive football team. We would have to play well to stop them and we didn't help ourselves with turnovers and short fields," said Vanderbilt head coach Bobby Johnson. "They took it to us. We hung in there for a while, but when you get in the second half and you have two turnovers and a short punt, you're just asking to get beat."
Vandy punted away its next possession and Georgia Tech ran out the clock from there.
Nesbitt capped the Jackets' opening drive with a four-yard TD run to open the scoring, but Smith threw an 11-yard scoring strike to Norman on the Commodores' first turn with the ball.
Vanderbilt went ahead 14-7 on Stacy's three-yard TD run a short time later before Nesbitt's score from the one on third down tied the game three minutes into the second quarter.
Nesbitt then hit Thomas for a 35-yard touchdown to take the lead and an Adams fumble on the ensuing series set up the Tech offense at Vandy's 22. Two rushes from Dwyer yielded seven more points on a 13-yard TD for a 28-14 lead, but Norman returned the kickoff 80 yards for a score to cancel it out.
Stacy then ripped off a 62-yard run to the end zone, tying the game at 28 three minutes before the break.
"I'm disappointed in the way we started. We missed some tackles that just killed us in the first half on big plays. They hit a ton of big plays. Offensively, we moved the ball fairly well all night. We just need to finish. There are a lot of areas we can get better at. All-in-all, we went on the road and won the game," said Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson.
Georgia Tech leads the all-time series with Vanderbilt, 19-15-3, with the teams facing off for the first time since 2003...Tech has won each of the last five meetings and is 11-0-1 in the last 12 matchups overall...Vanderbilt had 397 yards of offense...The Yellow Jackets won the turnover battle 3-1 and posted an overwhelming advantage in time of possession at 39:45-20:15.
11/01 01:49:10 ET