By Will Vandervort.
By Will Vandervort
ATLANTA, GA — Clemson takes down Auburn 26-19 thanks to a career-high 231 yards from Andre Ellington and a four-yard touchdown catch from DeAndre Hopkins.
Hopkins four-yard catch with 9:17 gave Clemson a 23-19 lead, and then after stopping Auburn on it’s next possession, Ellington broke off a 48-yard run that setup a Chandler Catanzaro 18-yard field goal with 1:24 to play.
The 11-play, 79-yard drive allowed the 14th-ranked Tigers to run 4:35 off the clock and force Auburn to burn its last timeout. Hopkins finished the game with a school-record 13 catches for 119 yards, while Tajh Boyd was 24-34 for 208 yards. He also rushed for 58 yards, including a big-seven yard carry on the deceive drive. Ellington broke off the 48-yard run a few plays later.
Clemson used a 13-play, 83-yard drive to score the game’s first points with 5:22 to play in the first quarter. Catanzaro capped the 5:03 march with a 24-yard field goal. The Tigers were backed up to their 24 early in the drive, but on third down-and-10, quarterback Boyd found Hopkins open in Auburn’s zone defense for a 25-yard pass play.
Auburn did not take long to answer Clemson’s first score as quarterback Kiehl Frazier connected to Emory Blake on a busted coverage on its ensuing possession for a 54-yard touchdown pass.
Later in the second quarter, Clemson’s Josh Watson forced an Auburn fumble and linebacker Jonathan Willard recovered the football at the Clemson 46. That set up Catanzaro’s second field goal of the night, making the score 7-6.
A second Auburn turnover on its next possession set the Clemson offense up again. This time Ellington broke off a 68-yard run where he kept his balance and zigzagged his way to the Auburn 15. After a late-hit-out of bounds penalty on Ellington, Roderick McDowell took a carry seven yards up the middle to give Clemson a 13-7 lead with a little more than seven minutes left in the first half.
Auburn got a 36-yard field just before the half to make the score 13-10.
Ellington has 123 yards on 12 carries to lead the Tigers in the first half, while Boyd finished the half 15-20 for 128 yards. Clemson had 275 yards of total offense in the first half on 48 plays.
After an exchange of punts, Auburn tied the game at 13 on a 46-yard field goal by Cody Parkey with 8:28 to play in the third quarter.
Clemson regained the lead with a 13-play 66-yard scoring drive capped by Catanzaro’s third field goal of the night with 4:39 to play in the third quarter.
Auburn tied the game on its next possession and then took the lead with 12:50 to play on Parkey’s fourth field goal of the night. That came with 12:50 to play in the game.