Thompson leads Gamecocks over East Carolina
Columbia, SC, United States (4E Sports) – Coach Steve Spurrier’s decision to start Dylan Thompson in place of injured starter Connor Shaw paid off as the sophomore quarterback threw three touchdowns to lead No. 9 South Carolina to a 48-10 victory over East Carolina Saturday at Williams-Brice Stadium.
Thompson completed 21 of 37 passes for 303 yards with no interception in his first career start to lead the Gamecocks to their second win in as many games.
Shaw bruised his right shoulder in Thursday’s 17-13 season-opening win at Vanderbilt. He was warming up before the game but Spurrier decided to rest him and start Thompson instead.
South Carolina’s receiving corps completely outplayed their Pirates counterparts, accounting for five touchdowns – two each from tight end Ryan Anderson and DL Moore. The Gamecocks’ receivers amassed 397 catching yards on 23 receptions compared to 333 by the Pirates.
Led by Marcus Lattimore’s 40 yards on 13 carries, the Gamecocks also had an outstanding running game, with 131 ground yards compared to the Pirates’ 70 yards.
The Gamecocks also picked up Pirates’ starting playmaker Rio Johnson thrice, with cornerback Jim Legree returning one for a 34-yard touchdown in the third period for a 35-0 lead.
Johnson finished 18-of-29 for 193 yards and his back-up, Shane Carden completed 12 of 18 passes and threw the Pirates’ only touchdown in the fourth period.
Lattimore opened scoring for the Gamecocks with a six-yard run before Anderson grabbed Thompson’s pass at the endzone for a 14-0 lead.
The Gamecocks scored three more touchdowns to complete their 35-0 start before Warren Harvey broke the Pirates’ scoring drought with a 23-yard field goal in the third period.
Moore opened the final period with a touchdown from a 16-yard pass by wide receiver Ace Sanders before Carden completed a 34-yard touchdown heave to Justin Hardy to make it 41-10.
Third-string quarterback Seth Strickland completed the Gamecocks’ romp with a 51-yard touchdown pass to Anderson with 44 seconds left in the game.