No. 1 Georgia comes alive to avoid upset, down Auburn


Riding a huge second half from All-American tight end Brock Bowers and two touchdown runs by Daijuan Edwards, top-ranked Georgia avoided what would have been its first loss in nearly two years and rallied for a 27-20 road win over Auburn on Saturday afternoon.

The Bulldogs trailed 10-0 after the first quarter but outscored the Tigers 27-10 the rest of the way.

Bowers had two receptions for nine yards in the first half but finished leading all players in receptions (8) and yards (157) and was the only player to catch a touchdown as the Bulldogs (5-0, 2-0 Southeastern Conference) remained unbeaten. Edwards paced the ground attack with 19 carries for 76 yards and his two scores.

Despite a first-quarter interception, Carson Beck completed 23 of 33 passes for 313 yards. He connected with Bowers for the game-winning, 40-yard score with 2:52 to go in the game.

Georgia wideout Ladd McConkey suited up for the first time this season and had four receptions for 38 yards. Marcus Rosemy-Jacksaint (two catches for 44 yards), Dominic Lovett (three grabs for 25 yards) and Rara Thomas (two receptions for 24 yards) were also productive in the Bulldogs’ passing attack.

Payton Thorne (team-high 92 yards) led an Auburn rushing attack that ran for 219 yards. He added 82 yards passing, as well. Jarquez Hunter added 19 carries for 59 yards and a score for the Tigers (3-2, 0-2).

Running back Brian Battie (85 all-purpose yards) and tight end Rivaldo Fairweather (four receptions for 44 yards) were also productive for the Tigers.

Auburn jumped out to a 3-0 lead with 6:04 to play in the first quarter after kicker Alex McPherson capped an eight-play, 84-yard drive with a 27-yard field goal. A 61-yard run by Thorne sparked the scoring march.

The Tigers increased their lead to 10-0 with two minutes left to play in the opening quarter when Hunter scored on a 5-yard touchdown run seven plays after a Jaylin Simpson interception near midfield.

An Edwards 2-yard touchdown run early in the second quarter helped trim Auburn’s lead to 10-7. A key 10-yard pass to Thomas on third-and-7 from the Tigers’ 15-yard line set up Edwards.

Georgia tied the game at 10-all after kicker Peyton Woodring capped a 10-play, 61-yard drive with 5:57 left to play in the second quarter with a 37-yard field goal. A 26-yard reception by Rosemy-Jacksaint helped get the Bulldogs inside the red zone.

Following a fumble by Georgia tight end Oscar Delp on the first play of the second half, Auburn took a 17-10 lead when Robby Ashford scored on a 9-yard run. An 18-yard run by Ashford and a 5-yard run by Hunter set up the scoring play.

Having not lost since Dec. 4, 2021, against Alabama, the Bulldogs tied the game at 17-all with 1:03 to play in the third quarter when Edwards capped a 10-play, 98-yard drive with a 13-yard scoring run. Two key third-down receptions by McConkey and Thomas helped keep the drive alive.

Fourth-quarter field goals by Woodring and McPherson had the game tied at 20-all before the Bowers touchdown with less than three minutes to play in the game.

–Field Level Media

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