No one appeared to suffer serious injury and the evening was pleasant. For those reasons, Georgia Tech’s spring game Friday night went into the books as a success.
The gold team, comprised of the second-team offense and the first-team defense, won 21-16 at Bobby Dodd Stadium in a scrimmage characterized by intermittent offense with both defenses generally controlling play.
A key component of Tech’s hopes for the 2017 season, quarterback Matthew Jordan, watched from the sideline with his right foot bandaged after a foot injury two weeks ago. He’s expected back for the fall. In his stead, quarterbacks TaQuon Marshall, Jay Jones, Lucas Johnson and Chase Martenson had their moments, but were shaky at others.
“I think we had a good spring practice,” coach Paul Johnson said. “I don’t get too hung up on the (spring) game, but I think all in all, we got better at some things. We’ve got a lot of things to work on.”
Wide receiver Brad Stewart, guard Will Bryan and linebacker David Curry were among those to leave the game with injuries. Johnson called it “the dangedest thing I’ve ever seen.” None appeared serious.
Marshall led the white-team offense to three field goals on five first-half possessions. Jones led the white team’s only touchdown drive and showed off his quickness with a 56-yard run down the east sideline. Johnson scored on a 70-yard keeper on the gold team’s second play from scrimmage. Martenson threw the game-winning touchdown pass to walk-on B-back Brady Swilling with 1:32 left in the game, a 61-yarder in which Swilling broke one tackle and bulled through another to reach the end zone.
“I’ve definitely progressed week by week,” Marshall said. “I wouldn’t say I’m where I want to be, because there’s a lot of work I need to improve on over the summer, so that’s going to be my focus going in.”
Defensive tackle Desmond Branch (five tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss), defensive end Antonio Simmons (six tackles, three tackles for loss, one forced fumble) and linebacker Brant Mitchell (seven tackles, 2.5 for loss, one forced fumble) were among the defensive standouts for the gold defense.
Attendance was estimated at 7,500, as the spring game’s string of inclement-weather games on Friday nights came to an end on a short-sleeve night in Midtown.
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