Kentucky runs past Gamecocks in lopsided win
LEXINGTON, Ky. (WIS) - While Kevin Harris was able to reach a historic milestone against Kentucky, it wouldn’t be enough to lift South Carolina to victory.
Instead, it was Kentucky’s Chris Rodriguez who stole the show on Senior Night for the Wildcats in Lexington with three touchdowns to hand the Gamecocks a 41-18 loss.
South Carolina seemed to get off to a good start. With Kevin Harris leading the charge on the opening drive, the Gamecocks made their way into Kentucky territory. Carolina appeared to score on the first drive with a pass from Luke Doty to Shi Smith, but a penalty wiped those points off the scoreboard. Moments later, the Gamecocks tried to get on the board with a Parker White field goal, but the 38-yard attempt was no good.
Kentucky would get on the board first after driving into Carolina territory on their first drive, but the Wildcats had to settle for a 22-yard field goal by Mark Ruffolo to take a 3-0 lead.
Kentucky added to their lead after forcing a ZaQuandre White fumble on Carolina’s next drive. That led to a 1-yard rushing touchdown by Chris Rodriguez to push the Wildcats ahead 10-0.
Carolina finally got on the board with a 47-yard field goal from White to cut the deficit to 10-3.
From there, Kentucky would dominate. The Wildcats scored 17 unanswered points, including a pair of rushing touchdowns by Rodriguez and Asim Rose, to take a 27-3 lead at the half.
The Wildcats weren’t done in the second half. Kentucky marched 75 yards while using nearly half of the third quarter to add a 1-yard touchdown run by Terry Wilson to push the home team ahead 34-3.
Despite the deficit, Kevin Harris wasn’t going to let Carolina go down quietly. The sophomore running back scored the Gamecocks’ first touchdown of the night with 5:21 left in the third on a 15-yard run making it a 34-10 game.
Harris reached the 1,000-yard mark in the contest and finished with 210 yards on 21 carries.
Carolina inched closer in the fourth quarter. Following a fake punt pass from Kai Kroeger to Dakereon Joyner, the Gamecocks would call on the former Fort Dorchester product four plays later. The former Gamecocks quarterback scored on a 30-yard reception on a pass from Doty. Carolina added the 2-point conversion to cut it to a 34-18 deficit.
Kentucky nearly fell asleep on the ensuing kickoff and Carolina almost came up with the ball, but the Wildcats managed to recover the ball.
That’s all Rodriguez needed. On the very next play, the Kentucky sophomore sped away from the Gamecocks defense for a 79-yard touchdown run.
Rodriguez had 14 carries, 139 yards, and three touchdowns.
Carolina ends the regular season with a 2-8 record.
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