Jacksonville Sports Day

RIVALRY: FSU Seminoles Make it a Game After Trailing Florida Gators in Fourth

Photo by Lawrance Toafili/FSU

GAINESVILLE – Florida State scored the final 14 points of the game but fell short as Florida took a 24-21 win over the Seminoles before 88,491at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, Florida’s second largest of the season.

Florida State finished its 2021 season with a 5-7 record.

Florida’s (6-6) win makes the program bowl eligible for the fourth time in as many seasons and for the seventh time in the last-eight campaigns. Some projections have them going to the Cure Bowl in Orlando, Dec. 17.

“They’re excited. That’s what we talked about last night. Who knows where we are going to be or when. But, I can tell you this – they are excited about that. They were excited about winning this rivalry game, and they knew it meant going to a bowl game. That senior class wanted it, “said Florida Interim Head Coach Greg Knox.

After falling behind 24-7, the Seminoles closed the gap to 24-14 on a 19-yard rushing TD by Treshaun Ward with 9:46 remaining and then to 24-21 on an eight-yard passing touchdown from QB Jordan Travis to Ontaria Wilson with 49 seconds left in the game.

Travis finished the game 18-of-29 passing for 202 yards with one touchdown and also rushed for 102 yards and one touchdown.

Andrew Parchment was Florida State’s leading receiver with 53 yards on five catches. Wilson totaled 50 yards and one touchdown on three catches.

The Seminoles attempted an on-side kick but were unable to get the ball back, and Florida ran out the final 49 seconds on the clock to gain the win.

Florida running back Dameon Pierce found the endzone with a three-yard rushing touchdown in the third quarter to bring his season total to 15 total touchdowns (12 rushing, three receiving).

Jammie Robinson led FSU with a career-high 18 tackles, a total that included 1.5 tackles for loss. D.J. Lundy totaled nine tackles while Kalen DeLoach and Akeem Dent recorded eight tackles each.

The Seminoles’ defense grabbed three interceptions, one each by Robinson, DeLoach and Jarvis Brownlee. Jermaine Johnson totaled six tackles and 1.0 sack.

“It was a hard-fought game and one that had a lot of swings to it,” said Head Coach Mike Norvell. “Just like this team has done during the course of the season, they continued to battle and they continued to fight. They put themselves in a position there at the very end to get an opportunity. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to capitalize on that.

Florida marched 75 yards for a touchdown on its first possession. Tight end Kemore Gamble’s 47-yard touchdown reception from QB Emory Jones in the first quarter marked the longest reception of Gamble’s career

Travis tied the game at 7-7 with a nine-yard touchdown run in the second quarter, his 17th career rushing touchdown which moved him into a tie for 16th in program history.

After heading into halftime tied at 7-7, Florida scored 17 straight points. Freshman QB Anthony Richardson was 5 of 7 passing for, 55 yards and one TD.

“It was good, just for my teammates to be able to trust me,” Richardson said. “For them to be able to trust me to go out there and get the victory. It feels good because it lets me know that guys believe in me. So, I really appreciate that.”

Florida led 24-7 with 12:36 remaining in the fourth quarter.

The Gators’ winning effort was highlighted by four sacks by linebacker Brenton Cox. Linebacker Mohamoud Diabate had six tackles.

“I’m grateful for that group of young men in there,” said Norvell. “They’ve done what I’ve asked them to do. They continued to believe, they continued to invest, they believed in each other, they believed in this staff. I was fully confident even when we found ourselves down 17 in the fourth quarter that we’d find a way, we’d make a run. \ Unfortunately, we came up a little short.”

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