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Tigers outlast Aggies on failed two-point conversion attempt

A rainy evening in College Station, TX could not stop the Clemson Tigers from sneaking out a win over the Texas A&M Aggies, 28-26. 

Texas A&M marched down the field to start the game, but the drive stalled after kicker Daniel LaCamera grazed the outside of the right post from only 26 yards out. 

The senior Kelly Bryant got the start, but a Justin Madubuike sack ended the Tiger’s first series after just three short plays. 

A short while after, the Aggies took a 3-0 lead on a LaCamera 40-yard field goal after another promising drive came to an end. 

Bryant returned for the second drive which started in a delay of game. A couple of plays later, he was faced with a third-and-16. That’s when he found Amari Rodgers streaking across the middle for a 64-yard catch and run. A few plays later, Bryant spotted Travis Etienne on a screen which resulted in a first and goal on the one. Bryant ran it in from there to take a 7-3 lead. 

Trevor Lawrence entered the game for Clemson’s third drive. It didn’t last long after he delivered his first pass to WR Tee Higgins for a 64-yard touchdown, taking a 14-3 lead. Lawrence finished the night with 93 yards and a touchdown. 

Texas A&M had another chance to add points to the board before the half, but Dexter Lawrence got a paw on LaCamera’s 50-yard attempt. 

As a result, Clemson started with a short field and ended up taking the ball all the way to the one yard line before facing fourth down. That’s when Justin Falcinelli’s exchange to Bryant hit the turf and the Aggies took over on downs before the half. 

Texas A&M quarterback Kellen Mond’s first pass of the second half found Jhamon Ausbon for a 26-yard gain. Yet again, A&M had to settle for a field goal attempt after another encouraging drive faltered. LaCamera’s kick closed the gap, making the score 14-6. 

On the Aggies’ next series, starter Kellen Mond cramped up and backup Nick Starkel entered the game in relief. He fumbled his first snap which was recovered by Justin Foster on Clemson’s 30. On the next play, Bryant found a wide-open Higgins for a 50-yard completion. Kelly Bryant capped the drive off with a touchdown pass from five yards out to Diondre Overton, stretching their lead to 21-6. 

The Aggies’ responded with a 69-yard completion to Camron Buckley on the first play of the following drive. Mond found Kendrick Rogers in the end zone on the next play for a touchdown, trimming Clemson’s lead to eight. 

Hunter Renfrow answered with a big play of his own for 40 yards on a pass from Bryant. Etienne capped off the eight-play drive with a touchdown run from the one, making the score 28-13. 

But Kellen Mond and the Aggies would not go away. On the following drive, Mond performed an act of wizardry to find Quartney Davis in the end zone for a 14-yard touchdown, making it a one-score game, 28-20.

After the two teams traded a few punts, A&M found themselves deep inside Clemson’s territory. Mond found Davis for a 25-yard gain, but Davis fumbled the ball through the end zone resulting in a touchback for Clemson. 

The Tigers punted once again after a three-and-out, giving the Aggies another chance. A&M’s luck continued when Mond’s pass went through Clemson’s K’Von Wallace’s hands finding its way to Kendrick Rogers for the touchdown. Wallace got redemption after intercepting Mond’s pass on the two-point attempt. A few Kelly Bryant kneel downs sealed a win for the Tigers. Bryant finished with 205 passing yards, 54 rushing yards, and two total touchdowns. 

Clemson (2-0) returns home next week to take on Georgia Southern (3-0).

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