Sunday November 6, 2005Football Works Double Overtime To Down Vanderbilt, 49-42
13th-ranked Gator football team held off Vanderbilt, 49-42, in double overtime on
Saturday night at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium to improve to 7-2 overall and 5-2 in
the Southeastern Conference. With 90,140 fans and a national television
audience looking on,
Leak finished with a career-high 32 completions in 41 attempts for 257 yards and passed for three touchdowns. He also led the Gators with a career-best 67 yards rushing on 12 carries, scored on a pair of one-yard runs and completed passes to 10 different receivers. Cutler was 28-for-42 for the Commodores, passing for 361 yards and four touchdowns.††
Vanderbilt (4-5/2-4 SEC) scored 21 points in the fourth quarter and rallied from a 35-21 deficit with under three minutes remaining to force only the second overtime ever in The Swamp. With 2:17 showing on the clock, Cutler found rookie wide receiver George Smith from two yards out and the successful extra point brought the Commodores to within a touchdown. The visitors recovered an onside kick and marched 57 yards on eight plays, capped off by a six-yard scoring toss from Cutler to freshman wide receiver Earl Bennett with 54 seconds left in regulation. Following a 15-yard penalty, freshman Bryant Hahnfeldt knocked through the long PAT to even the score at 35-35.
first overtime, Vanderbilt seized the lead on an eight-yard run by sophomore
Jeff Jennings. The Gators responded on their possession with a touchdown when Leak
hooked up with junior
In the second
Vanderbilt took the opening kickoff and drove 70 yards on six plays to grab a 7-0 lead on a 14-yard pass from Cutler to Earl Bennett with 12:44 remaining in the first quarter. Soon after, the Gators scored a touchdown on their initial drive for the second-straight game. During the 79-yard, 13-play drive that consumed 7:36, Leak threw 12 yards to sophomore tight end Tate Casey (Longview, Texas) to convert a third-down-and-eight, and Manson darted 16 yards to move the Gators to the 23 yard-line. On first-and-goal at the one-yard-line, Leak dove into the end zone and Hetland connected on the extra point to tie the score.
left in the first quarter, senior Vernell
knotted the game at 14-14 with 6:26 remaining in the half on a one-yard TD rush
by sophomore Cassen Jackson-Garrison. Cutler
completed 16-, 17- and 18-yard passes during the drive, and
Vanderbiltís first possession of the second half, sophomore linebacker Brandon
Siler recovered another fumble, his sixth of the season, to end Vanderbilt's next drive. The SEC leader in fumble recoveries returned the ball 14 yards to the Commodores' 46- yard-line. Leak completed a 12-play scoring drive with his second one-yard scamper of the night to put the Gators ahead, 28-14, with 3:51 remaining in the period.
the margin to seven points with 12:49 left in the fourth quarter on a 14-yard
pass from Cutler to senior Erik Davis. The Gators then chewed up 8:38 with a
16-play, 80-yard drive that resulted in a two-touchdown advantage. The score
came on Manson's first career TD, a two-yard rush. Facing third and 10 during
the drive, Manson made a 16-yard dash for a first down at the 50-yard-line, and
return to action next Saturday against