Scores

Final

W Carolina 21

(0-1, 0-1 away)

Georgia Tech 63

(1-0, 1-0 home)

7:30 PM ET, September 1, 2011

Bobby Dodd Stadium, ATLANTA, GA

1 2 3 4 T
WCU 0 21 0 021
GT 28 14 14 763

Top Performers

Passing: T. Washington (GT) - 271 YDS, 3 TD

Rushing: O. Smith (GT) - 4 CAR, 84 YDS, 2 TD

Receiving: S. Hill (GT) - 4 REC, 181 YDS, 2 TD

Georgia Tech scores 4 touchdowns in first quarter, rolls in opener

Associated Press

ATLANTA -- Orwin Smith scored two of Georgia Tech's four first-quarter touchdowns, Stephen Hill caught two touchdown passes from Tevin Washington and Georgia Tech beat Western Carolina 63-21 on Thursday night in the opener for both teams.

The Yellow Jackets piled up 662 yards of total offense -- their most productive game since 2000 -- but they struggled throughout the night to hold on to the football, losing two of six fumbles and allowing a second-quarter punt to get blocked and recovered for a touchdown.

Brandon Pechloff, who was sacked three times, had 180 yards passing for Western Carolina.

Georgia Tech, facing an FCS opponent that dropped to 10-46 since the start of 2006, showed flashes of a formidable passing game after ranking 119th in the nation last year.

Washington completed eight of 13 passes for 271 yards and three TDs. No. 2 quarterback Synjyn Days was 3 of 3 passing for 94 yards. Hill caught four passes for 181 yards. The yardage totals were career highs for all three players.

Georgia Tech had more yards passing in the first quarter (148) than it had in any game last season (130 in an Oct. 2 win over Wake Forest).

The Yellow Jackets, who led the nation in rushing last year, racked up 260 yards on the ground. Smith finished with 84 yards, which included a 77-yard score, on just four carries

Western Carolina scored three touchdowns in the second quarter but still trailed by 21 points at halftime.

Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson was surely irritated by his team's propensity to fumble.

Leading 28-0 near the end of the first quarter, Jackets B-back Charles Perkins lost a fumble that Western Carolina's Rainey Ala recovered at the Georgia Tech 31. The Catamounts went three-and-out, but Georgia Tech's Euclid Cummings fumbled away the ensuing punt return that Courtland Carson recovered at the Georgia Tech 4.

Pechloff's 2-yard run on the next play made it 28-7.

Washington made a poor pitch two plays later, but fell on his fumble for a 14-yard loss, and Georgia Tech punted.

After the Catamounts had a 13-play, 64-yard drive that ended with Michael Vaughn's 4-yard run and cut the lead to 35-14 late in the second, Georgia Tech answered with Washington's 26-yard TD pass to Roddy Jones.

But following another three-and-out by Western Carolina, the Jackets allowed Ala to block a 45-yard field goal attempt that was recovered by Isaiah Moore and returned for a 69-yard score to make it 42-21 at halftime.

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Team Stat Comparison

 
WCU
GT
1st Downs1821
Total Yards301662
Passing197365
Rushing104297
Penalties6-295-53
3rd Down Conversions8-189-12
4th Down Conversions0-10-1
Turnovers32
Possession31:4728:13

Passing Leaders

Western CarolinaC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Pechloff20/331805.500
Georgia TechC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Washington8/1327120.830

Rushing Leaders

Western CarolinaCARYDSAVGTDLG
Warren13433.3016
Boone5428.4033
Georgia TechCARYDSAVGTDLG
Smith48421.0277
Days14553.9122

Receiving Leaders

Western CarolinaRECYDSAVGTDLG
Alexander66410.7021
Rogers33812.7019
Georgia TechRECYDSAVGTDLG
Hill418145.3282
Melton16666.0066

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERWCUGT
TD13:42Orwin Smith 5 Yd Run (Justin Moore Kick) 07
TD10:07Stephen Hill 82 Yd Pass From Tevin Washington (Justin Moore Kick) 014
TD06:38Orwin Smith 77 Yd Run (Justin Moore Kick) 021
TD03:02Synjyn Days 7 Yd Run (Justin Moore Kick) 028
SECOND QUARTERWCUGT
TD14:39Brandon Pechloff 2 Yd Run (Clark Sechrest Kick) 728
TD07:57David Sims 3 Yd Run (Justin Moore Kick) 735
TD03:34Michael Vaughn 4 Yd Run (Clark Sechrest Kick) 1435
TD02:21Roddy Jones 26 Yd Pass From Tevin Washington (Justin Moore Kick) 1442
TD00:01Isaiah Moore 69 Yd Return Of Blocked Field Goal (Clark Sechrest Kick) 2142
THIRD QUARTERWCUGT
TD12:17Preston Lyons 20 Yd Run (Justin Moore Kick) 2149
TD03:00Stephen Hill 77 Yd Pass From Tevin Washington (Justin Moore Kick) 2156
FOURTH QUARTERWCUGT
TD07:25Deon Hill 5 Yd Run (Justin Moore Kick) 2163