Scores

Final

Troy 20

(3-4, 1-2 Sun Belt)

LSU 24

(5-2, 2-2 SEC)

8:00 PM ET, October 23, 2004

Tiger Stadium, BATON ROUGE, LA

1 2 3 4 T
TROY 7 3 7 320
LSU 7 10 0 724

Randall rallies Tigers again

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) -- Marcus Randall put a fine finish on a difficult night.

Randall threw a 30-yard touchdown pass to David Jones with 2:18 left to give LSU (No. 17 ESPN/USA Today, No. 18 AP) a come-from-behind 24-20 victory over Troy.

"You certainly have to appreciate every win that you have," LSU coach Nick Saban said. "And I certainly appreciate the fact that we competed, that we came back in the game and found a way to win."

It was the second straight game Randall rallied LSU to victory, though this wasn't what the Tigers expected against the Trojans from the Sun Belt Conference.

With no chance of repeating as co-national champions, Saban had urged LSU (5-2) to dominate its final five opponents, all unranked. The Tigers fell far short of domination.

The Trojans (3-4) had only 36 yards of offense in the first half, but trailed only 17-10 at the break thanks to LSU turnovers. Turnovers also allowed the Trojans to stay with the Tigers throughout the second half.

Troy scored the go-ahead touchdown late in the fourth quarter, but a penalty nullified it. Even with the touchdown called back, LSU couldn't get Troy off the field. The Trojans held the ball for 4 minutes and 44 seconds and capped the long drive with a 24-yard field goal by Greg Whibbs -- his second of the game -- to go up 20-17 with 3:59 left.

"I thought we had a chance to play with them," Troy coach Larry Blakeney said. "I didn't know how long we could hold out. You measure them player for player, in the two deep or player for player throughout the program, we don't have a dying chance. We don't stack up at all. But our kids gave it a tremendous try. We had them on the ropes."

Randall, who was named SEC offensive player of the week following the comeback win at Florida, engineered the winning 54-yard drive on four plays, including his own 7-yard run.

Starting and playing the entire game for the first time this season, Randall completed 24 of 37 passes for 328 yards and a touchdown. He was intercepted three times and sacked twice.

"Coach told me before the game, turnovers are a big thing," Randall said. "That made the game tougher for me."

Troy held LSU to 57 yards rushing, the lowest total of the year.

"We couldn't run a lick on their defense," Saban said.

Troy is trying to build itself into a competitive I-A program after a fast climb from Division II and I-AA. After opening the season with victories over Marshall and then-No. 17 Missouri, the Trojans have now lost four of their last five.

After last week's loss, Blakeney tried shaking things up with some lineup changes. The biggest one was starting freshman quarterback D.T. McDowell.

McDowell struggled against the Tigers. He completed only 7 of 14 passes for 60 yards and a touchdown. He was sacked five times and had to leave the game briefly after one hit.

LSU had 22 first downs to nine for Troy. The Tigers had 386 yards to 150 for Troy.

"It was tough out there," said LSU defensive lineman Marcus Spears, who had two sacks and six tackles for loss. "Troy got us backed up and they started two drives inside the 10-yard line and we gave up points. We were just halfhearted at times."

The Tigers took the opening drive 79 yards in nine plays to go up 7-0 less than five minutes into the game on Alley Broussard's 1-yard run.

Leverne Johnson forced and recovered an LSU fumble to set the Trojans up on the Tigers 20. Three plays later, McDowell hit James Earl Cray for a 4-yard touchdown to tie it.

Randall was intercepted twice in the first half. The second one led to a 25-yard field goal by Whibbs that put the Trojans up 10-7 early in the second quarter.

The Tigers took a 14-10 lead on a 1-yard run by Joseph Addai. A 23-yard field goal by Ryan Gaudet made it 17-10 at halftime.

After a third interception of Randall, the Trojans got the ball on the LSU 2. Troy tied it late in the third quarter at 17 on a 1-yard run by DeWhitt Betterson.

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Team Stat Comparison

 
TROY
LSU
1st Downs922
Total Yards150386
Passing60329
Rushing9057
Penalties8-424-45
3rd Down Conversions3-146-15
4th Down Conversions0-11-2
Turnovers04
Possession28:1131:49

Passing Leaders

TroyC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTQBR
McDowell7/14604.310-
Leak0/200.000-
LSUC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTQBR
Randall24/373288.913-
Flynn1/111.000-

Rushing Leaders

TroyCARYDSAVGTDLG
Betterson18492.7120
Richardson7405.7022
LSUCARYDSAVGTDLG
Addai10313.1110
Randall13272.109

Receiving Leaders

TroyRECYDSAVGTDLG
Dawkins33110.3017
Cray2189.0114
LSURECYDSAVGTDLG
Davis78111.6020
Green67212.0034

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERTROYLSU
TD10:42ALLEY BROUSSARD 1 YD RUN (RYAN GAUDET KICK)
Drive info: 9 plays, 79 yards.
07
TD5:39JAMES EARL CRAY 4 YD PASS FROM D.T. MCDOWELL (GREG WHIBBS KICK)
Drive info: 3 plays, 20 yards.
77
SECOND QUARTERTROYLSU
FG14:11GREG WHIBBS 25 YD FG
Drive info: 4 plays, -1 yards.
107
TD7:09JOSEPH ADDAI 1 YD RUN (RYAN GAUDET KICK)
Drive info: 15 plays, 65 yards.
1014
FG3:14RYAN GAUDET 23 YD FG
Drive info: 9 plays, 75 yards.
1017
THIRD QUARTERTROYLSU
TD9:23DEWHITT BETTERSON 1 YD RUN (GREG WHIBBS KICK)
Drive info: 2 plays, 2 yards.
1717
FOURTH QUARTERTROYLSU
FG3:59GREG WHIBBS 24 YD FG
Drive info: 9 plays, 47 yards.
2017
TD2:18DAVID JONES 30 YD PASS FROM MARCUS RANDALL (RYAN GAUDET KICK)
Drive info: 4 plays, 54 yards.
2024