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Beamer gets mayonnaise shower as South Carolina wins Mayo Bowl

Published: Dec. 30, 2021 at 3:23 PM EST
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - South Carolina coach Shane Beamer had a bucket of mayonnaise dumped over his head Thursday, putting a memorable and messy finish on the Gamecocks’ 38-21 victory over North Carolina in the Duke’s Mayo Bowl.

Jaheim Bell had five catches for 159 yards and two touchdowns for South Carolina (7-6), which rebounded nicely after it lost 30-0 to Clemson in its regular-season finale on Nov. 27. Kevin Harris added 169 yards rushing and a score, helping secure the mayo bath for Beamer.

Bell came into the game with 338 yards receiving and three TDs during the regular season, but figured prominently into the game plan early on.

The sophomore tight end got free for a 69-yard touchdown reception from wide receiver-turned-quarterback Dakereon Joyner and hauled in a 66-yard TD catch from former graduate assistant coach Zeb Noland on South Carolina’s first two possessions.

Juju McDowell added a 35-yard TD run in the second quarter as South Carolina averaged 11.6 yards per play while opening a 25-13 lead in the first half.

Sam Howell threw for 205 yards and a touchdown for the Tar Heels (6-7), and reserve running back British Brooks had a bowl record 63-yard touchdown run for the Tar Heels.

South Carolina rotated Joyner and Noland under center, and both were effective.

Joyner came into the game having attempted only one pass this season and 31 in his college career.

But the element of surprise proved effective on the Gamecocks’ first possession, when Joyner hit the 6-foot-3, 232-pound Bell in stride down the middle of the field.

Joyner finished 9-of-9 passing for 160 yards and also ran for 64 yards. Noland was 3-of-6 passing for 82 yards as the Gamecocks went nearly three quarters before their first incomplete pass.

Howell, a projected first-round pick in the NFL draft, made several impressive throws with his strong, accurate arm. But the junior quarterback spent most of the game under heavy duress playing behind an offensive line that struggled most of the season.

The Tar Heels cut the lead to 11 midway through the third quarter on a double-reverse flea-flicker, with Howell finding a wide-open Garrett Walston for a 37-yard touchdown.

But South Carolina’s offense proved too much for a porous North Carolina defense as the Gamecocks racked up 543 yards on offense.

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