Trevor Lawrence threw his first interception in almost a year Saturday, but it meant little. For the first time in his college career, Lawrence threw five touchdown passes and he did it one half.
The Clemson quarterback threw touchdown passes of 5, 83, 34, 8 and 16 yards as the top-ranked Tigers pounded Georgia Tech, 52-7, in the first half. The Tigers’ 52 first half points were the most for the Tigers in an ACC game.
The Tigers gained 473 yards in the first half, just 14 yards short of a Clemson record for a half. Clemson had 487 yards in first half at Duke in 2012.
Clemson scored 35 points in second quarter, which tied the school record for any quarter in history. The Tigers had 35 points in the second quarter against Wake Forest in 1981 and 35 against UNC in 2011. It is the most ever points for a road game.
Lawrence completed 22-of-27 passes for 391 yards, while defensive tackle Nyles Pinckney scored on a one-yard touchdown in the jumbo package and Travis Etienne had a 3-yard score.
Clemson opened the scoring with 7:55 to play in the first quarter when Lawrence hit Cornell Powell with a 5-yard touchdown with a back-shoulder throw. The touchdown drive followed a Travis Etienne fumble on the Tigers’ opening possession.
The Yellow Jackets tied the game for a brief second with a 59-yard touchdown pass from Sims to Camp with 6:32 to play. However, it took Clemson one play to put the game away. On the next play, Lawrence found a wide-open Amari Rodgers with an 83-yard touchdown for a 14-7 lead with 6:14 to go in the first.
From there, Lawrence and the Tigers took over. A Georgia Tech fumble led to a 30-yard B.T. Potter field goal and then Lawrence hit tight end Davis Allen down the seam for a 34-yard touchdown which made the score 24-7 with 12:43 to play in the second quarter.
Another long pass to Rodgers set up Pinckney’s one-yard score and then Lawrence found Frank Ladson for an 8-yard score. After Etienne’s 3-yard touchdown, Lawrence threw a dart to Rodgers with 16 seconds left in the half to complete the scoring.
Lawrence was intercepted in the first quarter, ending his streak of passes without a pick at 367, which is second all-time in ACC history. However, after throwing the interception, Lawrence completed 14 of his next 15 passes for 232 yards and three touchdowns.