LSU’s stout defense collects four key picks in rout of Idaho
Baton Rouge, LA, United States (4E Sports) – The No. 2 Tigers had a record-setting night thanks to the efforts of LSU safety Ronald Martin and defensive end Lavar Edwards, who each snagged deflected passes and returned them for key scores in a 63-14 win over the Idaho Vandals Saturday.
It was LSU’s 40th consecutive regular-season, non-conference win, an FBS mark.
The two defensive TDs by Martin and Edward, half of the four interceptions the Tigers recorded off Idaho’s signal-caller Dominique Blackman, provided the spark for LSU, which was coming off a 41-3 rout of Washington last Saturday.
Martin, who was making his first start with Craig Loston getting the night off, registered his first interception on a diving catch at the Idaho 30. It set up a six-play drive which ended with Alfred Blue’s 3-yard score, hiking the lead to 14-0.
After the Vandals got on board to make it 14-7, cornerback Jalen Collins again deflected a Blackman feed and got it once more into the arms of second year Martin, who returned it 45 yards for a TD.
Edwards provided the back-breaking play in the third, when he tipped a pass into the air and returned an interception 23 yards for a TD, stretching the margin to 35-14 early in the quarter.
Tigers increased it to 49-14 after Kenny Hillard followed it with TD runs of 71 and 1-yard. For the game, Hillard rushed for 116 yards and two TDs, giving him six TDs this season.
Jeremy Hill added 60 yards on the ground with two TDs for the Tigers. Martin had two interceptions and ran one in for a TD in the win.
LSU quarterback Zach Mettenberger completed 17-of-22 passes for 223 yards with two TDs and an interception.
Apart from becoming the first team in NCAA history to win 40 straight non-conference regular season games, LSU (3-0), which wrapped up a three-game homestand, also set a school mark with their 20th consecutive victory at Tiger Stadium.
Old Dominion transfer Blackman, who shined in his highly anticipated debut at quarterback in last week’s loss to Bowling Green, was 23-of-36 for 174 yards with two TDs and four interceptions for Idaho (0-3).
Against Bowling Green, Blackman completed 30-of-37 passes for 352 yards and a TD, considered one of the best first starts in school history.
In Saturday’s tilt, Idaho was outgained 472-213. The Vandals also committed 9 penalties for 49 yards compared to LSU’s 8 penalties for 58 yards.