Oct. 15, 2005
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) – Reserve running back Tashard Choice rushed for a career-high 107 yards and two touchdowns after P.J. Daniels left with an injury, helping Georgia Tech snap a two-game losing streak with a 35-10 victory over Duke on Saturday.
Daniels aggravated a shoulder ailment in the first half, but the Yellow Jackets (4-2, 2-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) hardly missed him. Choice, a transfer from Oklahoma who served as Adrian Peterson’s backup last season, got a waiver from the NCAA because of a family hardship to gain eligibility right away.
In the first five games, he mostly watched from the sidelines as three-year starter Daniels got the majority of the carries. Choice made the most of his chance against the Blue Devils (1-6, 0-3).
He gained 75 of his yards after halftime to help Georgia Tech rally from a 10-7 deficit. On the first possession of the third quarter, Choice rushed for 24 yards to move the ball to Duke’s 1, and Reggie Ball took it in the end zone on a quarterback sneak to give the Yellow Jackets the lead for good.
Later, Choice added a pair of 1-yard TD runs and Darrell Robertson returned an interception 28 yards for another score as Georgia Tech pulled away.
Ball finished 16-for-25 for 144 yards and a touchdown, but sustained a hip pointer in the third quarter and sat out the rest of the game. Daniels had 57 yards on the ground in limited duty.
Still, the Yellow Jackets had enough to hand the Blue Devils their second consecutive lopsided loss. They totaled only 8 yards passing last week in a 52-7 rout by Miami, and the effort was only slightly better in this one.
Freshman Zack Asack started for the third time and was 9-for-28 for 90 with two interceptions, while Mike Schneider misfired on his only two attempts. But Asack did manage to get his third touchdown pass of the season in the second quarter to tie it at 7, connecting with Andy Roland on a 3-yard score following Ronnie Drummer’s 50-yard run on a reverse.
Duke eventually took the lead, thanks to some help from the Yellow Jackets.
First, they ran a poorly executed fake punt late in the first half, and Djay Jones was stopped well short of a first down. Three plays netted no yards – often the result with the Blue Devils – but Robbie Rollins got a personal foul for roughing punter Chris Sprague to give Duke a first down.
Asack found Eron Riley open for a 38-yard completion, and Joe Surgan finished off the drive with a 23-yard field goal to make it 10-7.
Order quickly was restored in the second half, when the Blue Devils got the opening kickoff and promptly went backward. They punted after facing fourth-and-23 from their own 7, and Georgia Tech moved 43 yards in efficient precision to go back in front.