Two defensive TD’s for Tech in second quarter

A highly unusual second quarter comparable only to the first quarter of Georgia Tech’s game against Pittsburgh two weeks ago lifted the Yellow Jackets into a 35-16 halftime lead against N.C. State Saturday at Carter-Finley Stadium.

The Tech defense forced three turnovers and turned two of them into touchdowns and stayed on the field for the first 10:58 of the quarter. At one point, the Wolfpack ran 25 consecutive offensive plays, during which point the score went from 14-13 in Tech’s favor to 28-13.

After Tech B-back Synjyn Days ran 53 yards for a touchdown with two seconds left in the first quarter, N.C. State drove to the Tech 5-yard line and faced a second-and-goal with a chance to take the lead. Cornerback Chris Milton broke up the pass from quarterback Jacoby Brissett, unintentionally kicking the ball air before it hit the ground. Linebacker Quayshawn Nealy grabbed it out of the air and ran 69 yards down the Tech sideline before losing the ball when fullback Jaylen Samuels stripped him as he chased him down from behind.

With possession again, Brissett completed a 14-yard pass before cornerback D.J. White jumped a route and ran in his interception 38-yards for the touchdown and a 21-13 lead.

Once again with possession, N.C. State ran five plays before losing the ball a third time, this time when linebacker Tyler Marcordes sacked Brissett and forced the ball loose. The ball hopped into Nealy’s waiting hands, who ran the ball in 43 yards for a touchdown, the fourth score of his career. At that point, the Wolfpack had run 22 consecutive plays and surrendered two scores in the process.

N.C. State ran another three plays before punting, giving the Jackets the ball back with 4:02, their first time with the ball since Days’ touchdown at the end of the first quarter. They had scored 28 points despite having the ball just three times. About 45 real-time minutes had elapsed between offensive possessions for the Jackets.

And the Jackets drove 48 yards for a touchdown, their third touchdown of the quarter, this time a sneak by quarterback Tim Byerly, for a 35-13 lead. It was already the third-most points that N.C. State had given up in a game this season.

The disjointed nature of the quarter called to mind Tech’s first quarter against Pittsburgh, when the Panthers fumbled the ball away four times on their first six plays and fell behind 28-0 in the first six minutes of the game.