Jacksonville Sports Day

ACC: FSU No Match for No. 5 Notre Dame in South Bend

NOTRE DAME, Ind. — Taking the field for the first time in three weeks, fifth-ranked Notre Dame (3-0, 2-0 ACC) used the ground game to run past the Florida State Seminoles (1-3, 0-3 ACC), 42-26, Saturday night at Notre Dame Stadium (10,049).

Sophomore running back Kyren Williams had a career day, compiling 185 rushing yards on 19 carries with two rushing touchdowns. It was the most rushing yards by an Irish player since 2018 when Dexter Williams had 202, also against Florida State.

Freshman Chris Tyree also contributed to the successful night on the ground, totaling 103 yards on 11 carries with one touchdown. All-in-all, Williams and Tyree averaged over nine yards per carry.

Graduate student Ian Book finished the night 16-for-25 for 201 yards while adding 58 yards on the ground. He recorded three touchdowns on the night, one on the ground and two through the air.

Furthermore, Book tied Jimmy Clausen for the third-most career passing touchdowns, as he now sits at 60 in his career.

With the win, Notre Dame extended its program-best home winning streak to 21 games.

Notre Dame didn’t start the game as planned, turning the ball over on their own 32-yard line on the second play of the game. But the Irish defense forced Florida State to settle for a 42-yard field goal.

The 3-0 Florida State lead did not last long, as Kyren Williams ripped off a career-long 65-yard rush to get the Irish into the redzone. Two plays later, Book found Michael Mayer for an eight-yard touchdown reception, the first of Mayer’s career.

On the next offensive possession, Notre Dame put together another quick scoring drive, as Book completed passes to Braden Lenzy and Williams to get the Irish into Seminole territory.

Williams then busted loose off the left side for a big gain and scampered into the endzone on a 46-yard rush. Williams eclipsed the 100-yard plateau on the carry and increased the Irish lead to 14-3.

The Seminoles later closed the gap at 4:04 in the first after capitalizing off of a Notre Dame muffed punt. Starting the drive on the Irish 19-yard line, Florida State needed just three plays to cut the deficit to four.

Later, after an Irish three and out, Florida State used the deep ball to recapture the lead, as Jordan Travis connected with Tamorrion Terry for a 48-yard touchdown and a 17-14 advantage with 38 seconds left in the first quarter.

Notre Dame immediately regained the momentum in the second quarter as Book connected on passes of 36 and 17 yards to get the Irish into the redzone. Then Williams finished the drive with a one-yard rush, his second touchdown of the game. It also marked his second career multi-touchdown game as the Irish went back in front 21-17.

The Irish maintained its strong ground play for its fourth touchdown of the night, increasing its lead to 28-17. Notre Dame drove 81 yards, highlighted by a Chris Tyree career-long 45-yard rush for his first touchdown of the night.

The Seminoles responded with their longest drive of the game with 13 plays. The Irish defense held firm, as the visitors settled for a 26-yard field goal to bring the deficit to 28-20 with 1:19 to play in the half.

Next, Notre Dame put together a quick drive before the end of the half to extend its lead. After a 36-yard return from Jafar Armstrong, the Irish drove 58 yards in just 58 seconds. In fact, all five touchdown drives in the first half were all under 3 minutes and 11 seconds. Book capped the drive with a six-yard touchdown pass to Lenzy, sending the Irish into the break with a 35-20 lead.

Florida State cut the lead to 35-26 with its opening drive in the third quarter.

Notre Dame’s offense responded immediately, driving 73 yards on eight plays in 3:39 to push the lead back to double-digits, 42-26. After completing three passes on the drive, Book took it in himself for a three-yard rushing touchdown, his fourth rushing touchdown of the season.

The Seminoles threatened on their first drive of the fourth quarter, but Notre Dame’s defense shut the door via a Shaun Crawford interception in the end zone, returning it 23 yards. It was the first interception of the season for the Irish and the fifth of Crawford’s career.

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