Alec Chessari, Correspondent on (@AlecChessariFS Twitter)
TALLAHASSEE, FLA., (www.franchisesportsonline.net)- The Florida State Seminoles football team beat the Wake Forest Deamon Deacons in an ACC matchup during homecoming week in front of a crowd of 67,274.
“It was good to see our guys go out there and compete and get better in some of the areas we needed to and find a way to win a ballgame,” Seminoles head coach Willie Taggart said.
The Seminoles (4-3, 2-3) looked stagnant on both offense and defense in the early moments of the game. The offense’s first two drives went for three and outs. The Demon Deacons (3-4, 0-3) offense took the ball right down the field with a 15-play drive for 61 yards and a field goal in three minutes.
“I thought we stopped substituting so much, they were running uptempo and or guys weren’t getting set and ready. Burns sack was big, he started that energy and he made that play to get us going on offense and defense,” Taggart said.
Freshman quarterback Sam Hartman found redshirt junior tight end Jack Freudenthal for a 9-yard pass for the touchdown giving the Demon Deacons a 10-0 lead with six minutes remaining in the first quarter. The Seminoles answered with 38 unanswered points after that score.
After swapping three and outs from both teams, the Seminoles passing game started to heat up. Seminoles redshirt junior quarterback Deondre Francois found redshirt freshman wide receiver Tamorrion Terry for a 23-yard gain followed up by a pass completion to senior wide receiver Nyqwan Murray for a gain of 17 yards to the 3-yard line. Sophomore running back Cam Akers ran for a 3-yard touchdown, cutting the lead down to three with 24 seconds remaining in the first quarter.
The Demon Deacons had to punt after a seven-play drive stalled. Francois found junior wide receiver Keith Gavin for a 50-yard completion ending up with a fumble to the back of the end zone recovered by Demetrius Kemp of Wake Forest.
Hartman’s pass was tipped by the Seminoles freshman cornerback Asante Samuels and intercepted by sophomore free safety Stanford Samuels. Senior running back Jacques Patrick then punched it in from two yards out. Noles take the lead 14-10 with 9:50 remaining in the first half.
“We were hoping he was going to be open like that. That was the plan with the play call. These guys ran that play before, I believe it was in the Orange Bowl and Noonie came to me with the play, and we ran it, and it worked again,” Taggart said.
After Akers run went for three yards it is fourth down and three to go. Francois finds a wide open Murray in the end zone for a 33-yard touchdown with 2:01 remaining until halftime giving the Seminoles a 21-10 lead heading into the half.
“Cam had a great week of practice, I haven’t seen him practice the way he did this week in a long time. We told him last night it was going to pay off and the Miami game helped also,” said Taggart.
The Seminoles received the ball to start the second half and only needing two plays to find the end zone. Akers takes the handoff for a 17-yard gain and takes the next handoff right up the middle for a 58-yard touchdown run. The Seminoles drive lasted 30 seconds and put them up 28-10 over the Demon Deacons with 14:30 remaining in the third quarter.
The Seminoles defense comes up with another huge stop forcing another punt from Wake Forest. Francois pas complete to Mathews for a 12-yard completion to bring up fourth down. Junior kicker Ricky Aguayo nails a 49-yard field goal to put the Seminoles up 31-10 with 11:19 remaining in the third quarter.
After a big punt return by Mathews, Francois finds freshman wide receiver Tre’shaun Harrison for the 21-yard touchdown giving the Seminoles a 38-10 lead with 9:43 remaining in the game.
For the 99th play ran by Wake Forest, Hartman finds redshirt freshman wide receiver Sage Surratt for a 9-yard touchdown. The Seminoles still lead 38-17 with 4:36 remaining.
FINAL: Flordia State 38 Wake Forest 17.
Offense: Deondre Francois 29-40 353 yards 2 TD
Cam Akers: 13 carries 98-yards 2 TD
Jacques Patrick 11 carries 21-yards 1 TD
Nyqwan Murray 8 catches 131-yards 1 TD
Tre’shaun Harrison 3 catches 24-yards 1 TD
DJ Mathews 5 catches 40-yards
Keith Gavin 2 catches 67-yards
Defense: Stanford Samuels 8 tackles 1 INT
Brian Burns 4 tackles 2 sacks 2 TFL
Jaiden Woodbey 5 tackles 2 pass breakups
Josh Kaindoh 3 tackles 2 sacks