Georgia Tech Football: Turnovers doom Jackets in thrilling 2OT loss to Tennessee Volunteers

ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 04: TaQuon Marshall
ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 04: TaQuon Marshall /

A pair of new quarterbacks faced off in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Classic Labor Day game Monday night. The hometown Yellow Jackets almost got the best of an old foe.

Georgia Tech (0-1) was looking to make a statement in their 2017 season opener, but came out on the short end to a ranked Tennessee Volunteers team on the national stage, losing 42-41.

Prior to the game, Tech head coach Paul Johnson announced that TaQuon Marshall would get the ball for the Jackets. A junior, Marshall played a-back in 2015, and got plenty of snaps in the absence of an injured Matthew Jordan.

Tech got the scoring started in the first quarter with a one yard touchdown run from TaQuon Marshall. The Vols answered with a one yard score of their own mid way through the second.

More from Yellow Jacked Up

KirVante Benson put the Jackets up 14-7 with yet another one yard touchdown run with just over a minute left to play in the half, and Tech held Tennessee to close the quarter.

Marshall scored again for Tech in the third quarter on a… you guessed it.. one yard touchdown run, giving the Yellow Jackets a 21-7 advantage. Marquez Callaway made it 21-14 with a 10 Yd pass from Quinten Dormady for Tennessee.

Georgia Tech went up 28-14 on a six yard run from TaQuon Marshall early in the fourth, but left the game in the middle of the quarter with an apparent shoulder injury. He was replaced by Matthew Jordan.

Marshall returned for the next Tech possession with what appeared to be a healthy, fully functioning shoulder, running off some more clock for the Yellow Jackets.

Tennessee scored on a 50 yard touchdown pass still early in the fourth quarter, leaving Tech up only 28-21.

The Jackets turned the ball over deep in Vols territory late in the fourth quarter, and Tennessee capitalized with a long drive to tie the game at 28-28 with under two minutes left to play.

Tech got the ball back and drove down the field quickly, eventually setting up Shawn Davis for a 36-yard field goal attempt with 0:03 on the game clock. His attempt was blocked as the clock expired, sending the game to overtime.

Tennesse won the toss and elected to defer, putting Tech on offense first. Marshall scored his fourth rushing touchdown of the game with another short goal line run and the extra point put Tech up 35-28.

In their opening possession, Tennessee drove the ball into the endzone as well, making it 35-35 all with the point after to take the game into double overtime.

With the ball back yet again, Tennessee scrapped and clawed for yards and punched it into the endzone from the two yard line, going up 41-35.

Georgia Tech punched it in with Marshall’s fifth rushing touchdown of the game, bringing the score to 42-41 in favor of Tennesse, and Paul Johnson decided to go for two. Tennessee stopped the conversion attempt on the goal line for the win.

In the game, TaQuon Marshall set the Georgia Tech all-time record on rushing yards (249) and rushing touchdowns (5) by a quarterback in a single game.

Tech’s defense gave up 221 yards passing to the Volunteers and 148 yards on the ground. Tennessee scored six touchdowns in the game.

Next: Georgia Tech, Temple agree to home-and-home series

Georgia Tech gets back to action Saturday versus FCS Jacksonville State on a short turnaround. Kickoff from Bobby Dodd Stadium is set for 12:30 p.m.