Placekicker Colby Delahoussaye kicked a 50-yard field goal with three seconds left, lifting LSU to a 30-27 victory Saturday over Florida.
Delahoussaye’s game-winning effort was set up by Rickey Jefferson’s interception return to the Gators’ 36-yard line and after two offensive plays, the sophomore from New Iberia booted his career-long effort.
LSU (5-2 overall, 1-2) got the ball back with 24 seconds left when Jefferson picked off Jeff Driskel’s pass – plucking it out of the air - and returning it 23 yards.
Florida (3-2, 1-2) tied the game at 27-27 with 1:49 showing on Frankie Velez’s 18-yard field goal after the Gators reached LSU’s 2-yard line on Driskel’s 73-yard completion to Demarcus Robinson.
The lead changed hands twice during a four-minute span with LSU going ahead 27-24 with 2:40 remaining on Anthony Jennings’ 10-yard touchdown to Travin Dural.
The Tigers maintained the drive when Jennings connected with Dural for 41 yards on third-and-25 and the ball was moved to the Gators’ 13 following an illegal hands to the face penalty.
For the second time LSU’s special teams were victimized when Andre Debose, who scored in the first quarter, brought back a Jamie Keehn 53 yards the Tigers’ 9-yard line.
It took the Gators two plays to grab a 24-20 lead with 6:10 remaining on Driskel’s 11-yard TD pass to Robinson. He completed 14 of 25 passes for 183 yards with two interceptions and a TD.
LSU rallied to grab a 20-17 lead – its first of the season in SEC play - with 3:42 to go in third quarter on Leonard Fournette’s 2-yard dive into the end zone.
The Tigers’ go-ahead score took 13 plays and covered 65 yards in just over eight minutes, taking advantage of a pair defensive penalties that included a third-down holding infraction on defensive end Bryan Cox Jr. in the end zone.
With the ball placed on the 2-yard line, Fournette went airborne on first down but LSU’s lead remained three point after Colby Delahoussaye’s first missed extra point of the season.
Fournette rushed a career-high 27 times for 140 yards and two touchdowns.
LSU trailed in its third straight conference game, allowing Debose to make it 7-0 with a 62-yard punt return with just under minutes left in the opening quarter.
The Tigers defense created a scoring opportunity when linebacker Kwon Alexander force a fumble by Driskel that defensive Jermauria Rasco recovered in the air.
Two plays later Fournette scored from 12 yards out, bowling over a Florida defender over the last couple of yards into the end zone.
Florida went on to increase its lead to 17-7 at the 11:07 mark of the second quarter on Driskel’s 9-yard keeper and Velez’s 34-yard field goal.
LSU’s final scoring drive of the first half covered 75 yards – 70 of which came on the ground – with Fournette rushing six times for 41 yards on the series to move the drive into Florida territory.
Kenny Hilliard capped the 12-play, 75-yard march with a 1-yard run behind fullback Melvin Jones over the right side of the line on fourth-and-goal.
What you need to know
1) LSU finally snapped a 0-for-17 stretch on third downs against Southeastern Conference competition when Anthony Jennings completed an 8-yard pass to Trey Quinn.
2) Kenny Hilliard’s 1-yard TD near the end of the first half was the 27th of his career and tied the former Patterson High standout with LaBrandon Toefield for 10th on the school’s career list.
3) For the second straight game LSU’s wide receiver Travin Dural was held without a catch through the first three quarters. Dural caught his first pass with 3:33 left in the game with a 41-yard catch and later hauled in a 10-yard TD pass.
4) Florida lost standout cornerback Vernon Heargraves Jr. after the first quarter because of a concussion. The sophomore came up in run support to make a tackle against Leonard Fournette but suffered a glancing blow to the head.
5) Florida’s Andre Debose, who had a kickoff return for a touchdown versus LSU in his career, averaged 57.5 yards on two punt returns, including 52-yarder for a TD and 7-0 lead in the first quarter.