COLUMBIA, SC (AP/WIS) - Connor Shaw passed for three scores, Jadeveon Clowney forced a fumble and No. 13 South Carolina withstood Vanderbilt's rally from a four-touchdown deficit for a 35-25 victory Saturday night.
The win was the 13th straight at home for the Gamecocks (2-1, 1-1 Southeastern Conference), who are tied with Georgia for the second-longest active streak in the nation. South Carolina appeared to have this one finished early, scoring on its first four possessions to lead 28-0. It still led 35-10 when it opened the second half with Shaw's final TD pass, a 33-yarder to Brandon Wilds.
That's when the Commodores (1-2, 0-2) threw a scare into the Gamecocks, aided by a fumbled kickoff and punt by South Carolina. Vanderbilt scored twice in a 13-second span of the fourth quarter to cut the lead to 35-25.
Things got even scarier for the Gamecocks late in the game. With 8:24 remaining in the game and facing 3rd and goal at the Gamecocks 1 yard line, Commodores quarterback Austyn Carta-Samuels threw the ball to tight end Jordan Cunningham, but was picked off by cornerback Jimmy Legree. It was South Carolina's first interception of the season and couldn't have come at a better time.
"That play, I felt like I kind of sealed the deal," said Legree. "It felt good. It was a good call and good execution."
That play may very well have sealed the deal. Shaw then engineered a clock-eating drive that took South Carolina into Vandy territory, but the Gamecocks would turn over the ball on downs after a failed 4th and 2 conversion with just 1 minute left in the game.
South Carolina has next week off. However, they'll travel to Orlando, Florida to face the UCF Knights on Sept. 27.
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