Nov. 12, 2005
ATHENS, Ga. (AP) - Devin Aromashodu turned a fourth-down pass into a 63-yard gain, setting up John Vaughn's 20-yard field goal with six seconds remaining that gave No. 15 Auburn a thrilling 31-30 victory over ninth-ranked Georgia on Saturday night.
In a wild game featuring eight lead changes, Auburn (8-2, 6-1) came through when it counted. On fourth-and-11 at their own 34, Brandon Cox found Aromashodu breaking free over the middle.
The receiver made the catch in stride and raced for the end zone. Just short of the goal line, Georgia defensive back Paul Oliver managed to knock the ball away, with Auburn's Courtney Taylor falling on the fumble in the end zone.
"When it's fourth down you just cross your fingers and hope," Aromashodu said.
Asked what he was thinking when the ball came loose, he said, "It was terror. I was trying to get my balance so I could recover."
Since the ball was fumbled forward, Auburn got it at the 3 with 1:52 remaining. That actually worked to the Tigers' advantage, allowing them to run down the clock before Vaughn's winning kick.
Kenny Irons rushed for 179 yards on an exhausting 37 carries, scoring a pair of touchdowns. He fumbled at the Georgia 11 with just under 10 minutes remaining, but the Bulldogs fumbled the ball back two plays later.
Brannan Southerland lost the ball after catching a pass out of the backfield, and Auburn linebacker Karibi Dede scooped it up and ran 15 yards for a touchdown that put the Tigers ahead 28-27 with 9:28 remaining.
Brandon Coutu kicked his third field goal, a 41-yarder, with 3:25 left to put Georgia back ahead.
The Bulldogs were bolstered by the return of quarterback D.J. Shockley, who didn't play in a loss to Florida two weeks ago because of a knee injury.
Wearing a brace but looking fully recovered, the senior completed 20 of 36 passes for 304 yards and two TDs. He also ran seven time for 40 yards.
Cox threw for 279 yards, with Aromashodu catching four passes for 135.
Thomas Brown ran for a 6-yard touchdown with 12:30 remaining to put Georgia ahead 26-21. Georgia had a pair of players with more than 100 yards receiving. Tight end Leonard Pope had eight catches for 102 and a TD for Georgia, and Mohamed Massaquoi had 108 yards on six receptions with a touchdown.
Auburn and Georgia came into their 109th meeting, the Deep South's oldest rivalry, separated by just one point. Now make it Tigers by two.