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|Lee leads LSU to big win at Auburn|
AUBURN, Ala. -- Redshirt freshman quarterback Jarrett Lee came off the bench to lead the No. 6 LSU Tigers to their first victory at Auburn in 10 years and one day, 26-21, on a wild Saturday night on the Plains.
Lee, who entered for good when starter Andrew Hatch went down with a mild concussion in the third quarter, finished 11-of-22 passing for 182 yards and two touchdowns.
His second touchdown came with 1:03 remaining, as he tossed a dart to Brandon LaFell who made one cut and got a down-field block for an 18-yard touchdown that gave LSU the final margin.
LaFell led all receivers with four catches for 92 yards. Demetrius Byrd added three catches for 38 yards including a 22-yard touchdown pass from runningback Keiland Williams.
Chris Mitchell caught Lee's first TD, a 39-yard bomb midway through the third quarter that got LSU back into the game.
Meanwhile, runningback Charles Scott solidified his place among the SEC's best backs with a 21-carry, 132-yard performance.
LSU (3-0, 1-0 SEC) won the always-close battle by coming back from a 14-3 halftime deficit.
Head coach Les Miles, who's 8-3 against Top-10 opponents after three-plus seasons at LSU, again showed his wild side by calling for an on-side kick and a halfback pass that went for a touchdown.
But, it didn't take a madman to win tonight's smash-mouth SEC game. It was the LSU defensive front that allowed only 70 yards rushing on 36 attempts and forced seven Auburn punts.
On the final drive of the game, LSU defensive end Rahim Alem was called for a personal foul to allow Auburn into LSU territory with less than a minute to play.
Alem then made up for the play by sacking quarterback Chris Todd and putting Auburn behind the eight-ball.
A 23-yard pass from Todd to Rodgeriqus Smith on fourth down came up 2 yards short.
Lee kneeled the ball to end the game.
A first half dominated by defense came down to two key defensive plays that changed the completion of the game. A pass interference call on LSU freshman Patrick Peterson setup an Auburn touchdown, while a 24-yard interception by Auburn's Gabe McKenzie gave the home team a 14-3 halftime lead.
As predicted, the game started conservatively, with two first downs and four punts on the first four drives.
LSU was able to break the deadlock with a 46-yard field by Colt David with 2:02 to play in the first quarter. Hatch keyed the six-play drive with a 13-yard scamper to the Auburn 34-yard line.
The points were the first Auburn's defense has allowed in the first half through three games this season.
Auburn crossed the midfield line for the first time with less than a minute to play in the first half, but didn't stay there long. A false start led to a third-and-long that was unsuccessful, and another punt.
A muffed punt by returner Trindon Holliday pinned LSU at its 3-yard line to start the second quarter. Punter Brady Dalfrey gave the Tigers some breathing room with a 50-yard punt and Auburn took over at its 31.
On third-and-8 from the Auburn 33, Todd connected with Hawthorne for a 29-yard gain to the LSU 38. Tate then peeled off a 16-yard run around the right end to setup a first down at the LSU 19. When freshman cornerback Patrick Peterson was called for pass interference against Auburn wide receiver Tommy Trott, Auburn was awarded a first-and-goal at the LSU 3. Two runs by Tate resulted in a 1-yard touchdown and gave Auburn the lead, 7-3, with 8:56 left in the half.
Things did not improve much for LSU offensively, though Scott did all he could to keep the ball moving with three carries for 23 yards to start the drive. After no gain on Scott's fourth-straight run, Lee went to the air toward LaFell and Byrd unsuccessfully.
A career-long 50-yard field goal by David was struck low and came up well short.
LSU cornerback Chris Hawkins gave his Tigers their first turnover of the evening with an interception. However, Lee was again unable to connect with Byrd and tight end Richard Dickson. A 59-yard punt by Dalfrey pushed Auburn back to its 11-yard line.
With less than two minutes to play in the half, Auburn picked up one first down but Todd's quarterback draw on third-and-3 came up a yard short. With Auburn forced to punt, LSU called its first timeout to stop the clock.
A fair catch by Chad Jones setup LSU for a two-minute drill that went horribly wrong.
With Lee under center, LSU attempted to catch Auburn out of defensive position with a quick snap. Though LSU was flagged for an illegal shift, the play was allowed to continue and Lee's soft flip to Williams was taken in the air by Auburn defensive end Gabe McKenzie who ran 24 yards for a touchdown.
Auburn took a 14-3 lead into the lockerroom when LSU's final drive stalled just shy of midfield.
Auburn picked up where it left off to start the second half, putting together a 12-play drive into field goal range. However, Todd was sacked alone in the pocket by Tyson Jackson and Perry Riley to push the Auburn Tigers outside of the placekicker's range.
A 7-yard punt off the side of Auburn punter Ryan Shoemaker's foot gave LSU possession at its 27.
Three plays into LSU's first drive of the half, Hatch was injured while trying to rush around the right side on second-and-9. Staggering near the LSU sideline, Hatch dropped to the ground at the instruction of his coaches and was pulled from the game.
Lee took advantage of his opportunity, completing LSU's first pass in more than 30 minutes of game time to give the Tigers a first down. On third-and-4, He found Dickson open in the middle of the field for a 16-yard gain to the Auburn 39.
After consecutive incomplete passes setup a third-and-9 from the Auburn 39, Lee scrambled right under heavy pressure and heaved a touchdown pass to the waiting arms of Chris Mitchell.
Mitchell's first touchdown as a Tiger cut the Auburn lead to 14-10 with 6:28 left in the third quarter.
Miles and the Tigers dug into the bag of tricks for the first time, converting an onside kick without being touched. Off the boot of kickoff specialist Josh Jasper, Jai Eugene recovered for the Tigers at their 42-yard line.
Though LSU was unable to gain a first down and punted, Auburn's ensuing drive ended with a Hawkins interception deep in LSU territory.
LSU immediately went back to Scott, who gained 11 yards up the middle. Then, Lee found a rhythm with LaFell for gains of 33 and 23 yards to the Auburn 22. Miles and offensive coordinator Gary Crowton again dug into the archived to find a scoring play that gave LSU a lead.
Lee pitched to Williams who came out of the backfield on a misdirection play. Instead of running up-field, Williams passed the ball over the head of four defenders and into the arms of Byrd for a 22-yard touchdown.
David's point after touchdown gave LSU a 17-14 lead on the final play of the third quarter.
LSU extended the lead to 20-14 with a 32-yard field goal by David with 8:27 to play.
However, Auburn wasn't finished.
On second-and-10 from the Auburn 26, Todd connected with Hawthorne for a 58-yard catch and run. Todd rolled left, then right and found Hawthorne uncovered along the sideline.
On third-and-9 from the LSU 15, Todd then threw over the top of the defense to Robert Dunn for a 15-yard touchdown.
Two possessions later, Lee led LSU down the field for the game-winning score.
LSU returns to action on Saturday, Sept. 27, when Mississippi State comes to Baton Rouge for the annual "Gold Game." Kickoff is set for 6:30 p.m. on ESPN2.
LSU vs. Auburn
Sept. 20, 2008 – Jordan-Hare Stadium (Auburn, Ala.)
1. LSU's game captains were 1 Brandon LaFell, 6 Colt David, 28 R.J. Jackson, 49 Kirston Pittman, 74 Brett Helms and 93 Tyson Jackson.
2. Auburn won the toss and deferred to the second half. LSU received the opening kickoff.
3. Tigers extending their notable consecutive starts streak tonight were: LT Ciron Black (30) and LG Herman Johnson (27).
4. LSU's onside kick midway through the third quarter was the first the Tigers have recovered since Dec. 1, 2001 against Auburn in a game that was moved because of 9/11.
5. Here are some notable updated trends for LSU under head coach Les Miles: The Tigers are 34-2 when rushing for 100 yards or more ... LSU is 34-3 when scoring 20 or more points ... 12-3 record in road games ... 8-3 record vs. Top 10 teams.
6. LSU's first win at Auburn since Sept. 19, 1998 when LSU defeated Auburn 31-19. The stretch lasted 10 years and one day.
7. WR Demetrius Byrd has now caught a pass in 13 straight games dating back to last year's Tulane game on Sept. 29.
a. Byrd recorded his second TD reception of the season and ninth of his career on a 22-yard pass from Keiland Williams as time expired in the third quarter.
8. CB Chris Hawkins recorded his first career interception at the 5:34 mark in the second quarter and added another pick late in the third quarter.
a. Hawkins is the first LSU player to record two interceptions in a game since Craig Steltz did so against Ole Miss on Nov. 17 last season.
9. P Brady Dalfrey's punt of 59 yards with 4:30 remaining in the second quarter was a career long besting his previous career high of 46 yards.
10. WR Chris Mitchell hauled in his first career touchdown pass on a 39-yard throw from Jarrett Lee with 6:28 in the third quarter.
11. QB Jarrett Lee tallied his third touchdown pass of the season on a 39-yard toss to Chris Mitchell with 6:28 remaining in the third.
a. Lee fired his second touchdown of the game and fourth of his career on an 18-yard strike to Brandon LaFell with 1:03 left to play.
12. RB Keiland Williams completed his first career TD pass on a 22-yard throw to Demetrius Byrd as time expired in the third quarter.
a. Williams is the first LSU running back to complete a TD pass since Kevin Faulk did so to Larry Foster versus Mississippi State on Oct. 26, 1996.
13. RB Charles Scott registered his third consecutive 100-yard rushing game of the season.
a. Scott became the first LSU RB to rush for three consecutive 100-yard games since Joseph Addai did it against Vanderbilt, Florida and Auburn in October 2005. Addai ran for 102 against the Commodores, 156 against the Gators and 105 against Auburn.
b. Scott ran for 160 yards against Appalachian State, 102 against North Texas and 132 against Auburn.
14. PK Colt David connected on his third made field goal of the season and 41st of the year on a 46-yard field goal with 2:02 left in the first quarter.
a. David broke the school record of career points by a kicker with his nine points tonight. David's career total of 298 shattered the old mark of 292 set by David Browndyke (1986-89).
15. WR Brandon LaFell hauled in an 18-yard touchdown from Jarrett Lee with 1:03 left in the game. The touchdown marked LaFell's team-leading third touchdown of the season and the ninth of his career.
(Report courtesy of lsusports.net)