College

No. 1 Georgia pulls away in the 2nd half to beat arch-rival Georgia Tech

Saturday marked the third straight game number one Georgia got everything it wanted from a big underdog, but the Bulldogs prevailed with a huge second half, downing arch-rival Georgia Tech 37-14.

Georgia led just 10-7 at halftime but ran off 27 unanswered points before the Yellow Jackets scored a touchdown with less than three minutes remaining for the final outcome.

With the win, the Bulldogs finished off their second straight 12-0 regular season. The victory also marked the fifth (no game in 2020) straight win and 18th in the last 21 meetings that Georgia has beaten its in-state rival.

Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett completed 10 of 18 passes for 140 yards including touchdown passes to Marcus Rosemy-Jacksaint and Brock Bowers.

Bennett is part of a senior class that set a school record for wins going 46-5. The 2021 class finished up at 45-8.

Georgia has now won a school record 27 straight regular season games.

Senior running back Kenny McIntosh had his second straight big game as he finished up as the Bulldogs’ leading rusher and receiver with 86 yards on the ground and 96 thru the air. McIntosh also scored on a two-yard run early in the fourth quarter to give Georgia a commanding 30-7 lead.

Georgia’s defense gave up a 75-yard touchdown drive on Tech’s first possession of the game but settled down after that forcing the Jackets to punt on its other four possessions of the first half. The Bulldogs also forced a fumble in the second half while allowing just 68 total yards over the final 30 minutes.

“I thought we controlled the run game. They didn’t try much to run the ball,’ said Georgia head coach Kirby Smart. “They were really perimeter with everything they did. Our guys played physical up front and dominated the line of scrimmage. It’s the way the game is supposed to be played. We just have to be more consistent with getting turnovers and getting off the field on third down.”

Sophomore linebacker Smael Mondon led the Bulldogs with six tackles. He was also one of three Bulldogs, including Jalen Carter and Tykee Smith, to finish with 1.5 tackles for loss.

Georgia Tech closes out the regular season at 5-7, including a 4-4 mark under interim head coach Brent Key.

“A lot of credit to Kirby (Smart) and his staff and their players,” said Key. “They have a good football team and are well-coached. They did a good job down the stretch, especially in the second half. We made some mistakes in the second half and couldn’t sustain some drives. Credit to Georgia and their football team. I didn’t see any quit in our team. They played their tails off till the clock hit zero and that is something to build off of going into the offseason.”

Georgia gets back in action next Saturday against LSU in the SEC Championship game in Atlanta. Kickoff is set for 4:00. The two teams last met in the 2019 SEC Championship game won by the Tigers.

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