ATLANTA (AP) -- Reggie Ball ran for 130 yards, setting a school
record for a quarterback, and Georgia Tech scored three
fourth-quarter touchdowns to beat Troy 35-20 Saturday.
The Yellow Jackets wore down the smaller Troy defense by rushing
for 320 yards. Ball's previous career high was 103 yards rushing
against Vanderbilt as a freshman in 2003.
Troy, which lost at Florida State 24-17 last week, again played
even with an Atlantic Coast Conference team through three quarters.
The Trojans from the Sun Belt Conference were tied with Tech at
14-14 entering the final quarter.
Ball ran 16 times and passed for two touchdowns, completing 13
of 29 passes for 164 yards with two interceptions.
Troy focused its defense on Tech's star receiver Calvin Johnson,
who caught only two passes for 9 yards and ran 21 yards on a
reverse to set up the Yellow Jackets' first score -- a 26-yard run
by Rashaun Grant in the first quarter.
Tech (2-1) finally overwhelmed Troy (1-2) on the ground as
Tashard Choice rushed for 78 yards and a touchdown and Grant added
51 yards rushing.
Tech's previous high rushing mark for a quarterback was 122
yards by Gary Hardie against Tulane in 1978.
Kenny Cattouse led Troy with 69 yards rushing on 18 carries.
Omar Haugabook was 18-for-32 passing for 182 yards and a touchdown,
but he also threw two interceptions in the spread attack.
Gary Banks caught seven passes for 101 yards and a touchdown for
Troy. The Trojans' brutal schedule takes them to Nebraska next
Johnson limped off the field early in the second period after he
took a hit from Troy safety Terence Moore following a catch for a
loss of 2 yards. He sat out most of the rest of the half and didn't
have another catch.
On the next play, Ball completed a 55-yard touchdown pass to
James Johnson for a 14-0 lead.
A helmet-to-helmet personal foul on Tech defensive end Michael
Johnson helped keep Troy's first touchdown drive alive. The penalty
gave the Trojans a first down at the Tech 7, and Haugabook scored
on a third-down keeper from the 1.
Troy tied the game at 14-14 with an 80-yard touchdown drive to
open the second half.
Haugabook found a seam between Tech defensive backs Jamal Lewis
and Jahi Word-Daniels in the left side of the end zone for a
25-yard touchdown pass to Banks.
Tech was denied a scoring opportunity late in the third quarter
when Ball's pass from the Troy 6 was intercepted by Moore in the
Tech reclaimed the lead on a fourth-down pass from the Troy 1
early in the fourth quarter. Fullback Mike Cox made a diving
one-handed catch, pulling the pass from Ball in with his right hand
as he hit the ground.
Two interceptions of Haugabook set up Tech's next two
Linebacker Gary Guyton's interception gave Tech possession at
the Troy 40. Two long runs -- 19 yards by Choice and 16 yards by
Ball -- set up a 5-yard scoring run by Choice for a 28-14 lead.
Safety Jamal Lewis's second interception in two weeks gave Tech
possession at midfield. Freshman Jamaal Evans scored from the 13 on
his first carry of the game, pushing the lead to 35-14.
Troy's Anthony Jones scored from the 1 with 1:30 left, but Greg
Whibbs missed the extra-point attempt.