Scores

Final

South Carolina 7

(1-0, 1-0 away)

NC State 3

(0-1, 0-1 home)

Coverage: ESPN

7:00 PM ET, September 3, 2009

Carter-Finley Stadium, Raleigh, NC

1 2 3 4 T
SC 7 0 0 07
NCST 0 0 3 03

Top Performers

Passing: S. Garcia (SC) - 148 YDS, 1 INT

Rushing: B. Maddox (SC) - 23 CAR, 66 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: W. Saunders (SC) - 4 REC, 50 YDS

Defense dominates as Gamecocks nab second straight season-opening win

Associated Press

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Brian Maddox had a short touchdown run while Stephen Garcia completed a key third-down pass in the final minutes to help South Carolina beat North Carolina State 7-3 on Thursday night.

Garcia threw for just 148 yards on a frustrating night for both offenses, but the sophomore came through with a 33-yard completion to Moe Brown that allowed the Gamecocks to run out the final 2 1/2 minutes of the game. It gave South Carolina a second straight season-opening victory against the Wolfpack, who were shutout 34-0 in last year's meeting and failed to reach the end zone in the rematch.

Maddox scored from a yard out in the first quarter and finished with 66 yards rushing, which ended up being about the most reliable form of offense for typically pass-happy coach Steve Spurrier. Garcia completed 13 of 22 passes with an interception that gave the Wolfpack a needed burst of momentum and led to N.C. State's only scoring drive.

It was just one of numerous mistakes for the Gamecocks, the most costly being an offensive pass interference penalty on Tori Gurley that negated his 38-yard touchdown catch in the first quarter. There was also a low snap that killed a second-quarter field-goal attempt and a missed 27-yard kick from Spencer Lanning in the third.

Then again, the Gamecocks had plenty of wiggle room considering the how defense bottled up Russell Wilson and the Wolfpack's offense all night.

N.C. State managed just 133 yards, with Wilson -- who last year became the first freshman named first-team all-Atlantic Coast Conference quarterback -- completing just 12 of 23 passes for 74 yards while facing steady pressure from the speedy South Carolina pass rush. He got no help from the Wolfpack's ground game, either, with Toney Baker's first-quarter fumble setting up Maddox's early TD run.

Still, the Wolfpack had a chance for the go-ahead score, pushing to South Carolina's 32 with about 4 minutes left. Wilson evaded the rush and lofted the ball toward Jay Smith in the end zone despite the reserve receiver being in double coverage, but the ball slipped over both defenders and bounced off Smith's hands near the back of the end zone.

That drive ended with Wilson's fourth-down incompletion, and Garcia soon found Brown behind two Wolfpack defenders to seal the win.

Wilson set an ACC record with 272 consecutive passes without an interception. Florida State's Drew Weatherford held the record with 270 set in 2007.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Team Stat Comparison

 
SC
NCST
1st Downs1611
Total Yards256133
Passing14874
Rushing10859
Penalties3-454-23
3rd Down Conversions5-155-14
4th Down Conversions2-30-1
Turnovers11
Possession32:2527:35

Passing Leaders

South CarolinaC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Garcia13/221486.701
North Carolina StateC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Wilson12/23743.200

Rushing Leaders

South CarolinaCARYDSAVGTDLG
Maddox23662.919
DiMarco5193.807
North Carolina StateCARYDSAVGTDLG
Eugene9364.0014
Baker8243.009

Receiving Leaders

South CarolinaRECYDSAVGTDLG
Brown35418.0033
Saunders45012.5030
North Carolina StateRECYDSAVGTDLG
Bryan4225.508
Spencer11515.0015

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERSCNCST
TD09:10Brian Maddox 1 Yd Run (Spencer Lanning Kick) 70
THIRD QUARTERSCNCST
FG00:56Josh Czajkowski 43 Yd 73