Bounce back big: Tigers edge Florida at the Swamp

GAINESVILLE, FL - OCTOBER 07: Danny Etling #16 and Stephen Sullivan #10 of the LSU Tigers celebrate following a victory against the Florida Gators at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on October 7, 2017 in Gainesville, Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

“I am proud of our leadership. It was a tough week.”

Those were the words of LSU head coach Ed Orgeron after the Tigers defeated Florida 17-16 Saturday at the Swamp in Gainesville. LSU bounced back after a 24-21 loss to Troy last Saturday in Baton Rouge.

LSU possessed the ball for more than 33 minutes, and rushed for 216 yards. Wide receiver Russell Gage had 52 rushing yards, including a 30 yard touchdown run late in the first quarter for the first score of the game.

“We got back to playing Tiger football,” said Orgeron. “This was a complete team win.”

Connor Culp booted a 38 yard field goal in the second quarter, and Danny Etling threw a 2 yard touchdown pass to tight end/F back Tory Carter early in the third quarter. Carter’s catch was the first touchdown scored by a true freshman at LSU in the 2017 season.

Florida scored two third quarter touchdowns on runs by tailback Lamical Perine. But after the second Florida touchdown, kicker Eddy Piniero missed the point after wide left. LSU made their 17-16 lead stand.

Linebacker Devin White ended Florida’s hopes when he batted down a fourth down pass by Gator quarterback Felipe’ Franks. White had 13 tackles, and a sack.

LSU avenged last year’s loss to Florida at Tiger Stadium. An already intense rivalry became even more so, when the two schools squabbled publicly over when and where to play the 2016 game. The game was postponed due to Hurricane Matthew and was eventually moved to Baton Rouge.

“They got what they deserved,” said Florida coach Jim McElwain after last November’s win.

Florida scheduled LSU for homecoming, but on the first Saturday in October, it was the Tigers who crashed the party.

The Tigers moved to 4-2 on the season, and are now 4-0 after a loss under head coach Ed Orgeron.

LSU hosts Auburn next Saturday at Tiger Stadium.