Saturday, September 15, 2018

Post Game Notes

UGA Sports Communications

Lighting Up The Scoreboard:
The Dawgs topped Middle Tennessee 49-7 on Saturday, giving Georgia three consecutive wins with at least 40 points. The Dawgs last did that when they started the 2012 season with five straight 40+ point games. Georgia tallied 45 points in the first half, marking the Dawgs’ highest output since scoring 45 versus Troy through the first two quarters in 2014. Georgia won that contest 66-0. Through their first three wins of 2018, the Dawgs are averaging 45.3 ppg. Georgia is now 2-0 all-time against MTSU.

Pounding The Rock: The Dawgs churned up 382 yards (217 rushing, 165 receiving) by halftime as they jumped out to a 42-7 lead. For the game, Georgia finished with 484 total yards (261 rushing, 223 receiving) with a performance that featured a 100-yard rusher during its latest victory. Junior TB Elijah Holyfield had a career-long 66-yard run on the Dawgs’ first possession to set up a touchdown three plays later. Holyfield completed the half with eight carries for a career-high 100 yards. The last back to hit the century mark was Sony Michel (181) and Nick Chubb (145) in the Rose Bowl Game win over Oklahoma last year. Today, sophomore QB Jake Fromm connected with junior receiver Mecole Hardman for a 5-yard touchdown after Holyfield’s longest run. This was Hardman’s team-leading third touchdown catch of the year. Hardman later returned a punt 70 yards for a touchdown. He last scored two different ways when he caught a touchdown pass and ran for a touchdown in the CFP National Championship Game against Alabama.

The Dawgs’ seven-play scoring drive went 87 yards. Fromm finished the first half 10-for-12 for 128 yards and three touchdowns, which matches his career high, and completed the game 10-for-12 for 128 yards and 3 TDs. Junior WR Tyler Simmons took a handoff at the beginning of the second quarter a career long 56 yards for his first career touchdown of any kind. This capped a season-long scoring drive of 94 yards, which was six plays and lasted 2:40, and was Georgia’s longest scoring drive since the Dawgs went 98 yards on 11 plays in 6:34 versus Auburn in 2014. Freshman QB Justin Fields led this scoring drive after Fromm played the first two series. Fields finished 6-for-8 for 71 yards and 1 TD passing and 1 TD rushing (15-yarder).

To The House:
Mecole Hardman, who led the SEC in punt returns/yards/avg. last year, returned a punt 70 yards in the second quarter for his first career PR for a touchdown. This gave the Dawgs a 28-0 edge. Isaiah McKenzie was the last Georgia player to return a punt for a score after he went 82 yards versus UL-Lafayette in 2016. Hardman finished with 111 all-purpose yards in the game (90 PR yards, 21 receiving).

Back To Back Picks:
Senior DB Deandre Baker snagged his second interception of the year and in as many games on a 4th-and-9th situation in the opening period. He returned it 26 yards a week after he had a 55-yard return in the win at #24 South Carolina. Baker’s seventh career pick led to a Georgia touchdown. In the second half, Baker forced a fumble that Richard LeCounte scooped up and returned seven yards. Baker finished with 3 tackles, 1 FF and 1 INT.

Firsts: Sophomore WR Jeremiah Holloman hauled in an 11-yard touchdown catch from Fromm to put Georgia up 14-0. This marked Holloman’s first career touchdown and Fromm’s second scoring pass of the half. Holloman later caught a 65-yard pass from Fromm and ended the day with a career-high three catches for 90 yards and a TD. Justin Fields also registered his first TD run on a 15-yard rushing score near the end of the first half. Also of note, senior WR Jayson Stanley caught his first career touchdown on a 9-yard strike from Fields in the third quarter.

Defense Flexes:
Georgia held MTSU to a touchdown through the first two periods and to 169 yards on 34 plays and just six first downs. The Blue Raiders’ score came on a 41-yard receiving touchdown. MTSU was shut out in the second half and finished with 288 total yards on 68 plays. Senior ILB Juwan Taylor led the Dawgs with six stops while sophomore LB Monty Rice had five stops.

Points off Turnovers: Georgia is +3 in Turnover Margin, scoring 21 points off five turnovers on the year. Opponents have forced two turnovers and turned them into no points. Deandre Baker had his second interception of the year and returned it to the MTSU 49. Five plays later, Jeremiah Holloman caught his first career touchdown. In the second half, Baker stripped an MTSU receiver and Richard LeCounte recovered it but Georgia had to eventually punt.

Starters: Freshman Cade Mays started at LT for his first career start. He started in place of sophomore Andrew Thomas who injured his left ankle at South Carolina last week. On defense, sophomores Mark Webb and William Poole both got their first starts at DB.

Captains: Today’s captains were senior Deandre Baker and juniors Riley Ridley and Rodrigo Blankenship.

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