After trailing by seven entering the fourth quarter, the Clemson Tigers scored 13 unanswered to defeat the Louisville Cardinals 30-24 at Cardinal Stadium on Saturday night. The Cardinals attempted a late comeback, but injuries and missed opportunities proved to be the deciding factor in the contest.
The Cardinals began the game with a six-play, 75-yard opening drive capped off by a 26-yard touchdown run from Jalen Mitchell. Clemson answered immediately with a three-play drive spanning 75 yards; DJ Uiagalelei has arguably one of the strongest arms in the ACC, and he put it on display with an early touchdown strike to Beaux Collins from 46 yards out.
Later in the quarter, a muffed punt gave Louisville the ball just outside the Clemson red zone. Malik Cunningham took advantage of the turnover, scoring on a 23-yard touchdown to make it a 14-7 game.
James Turner’s 44-yard field goal pushed the lead to 10 with 10:32 to play in the first half. However, BT Potter nailed a 38-yard field goal of his own on the following drive to cut the lead to seven.
Uiagalelei’s touchdown pass to Davis Allen with 18 seconds left in the second quarter knotted the score up at 17 heading into halftime.
The Cardinal defense stopped the Clemson offense on the first drive of the third quarter and forced a punt. Cunningham recorded his 15th touchdown of this season, running it in from 51 yards out to put Louisville up seven.
Will Shipley’s big return on the following kickoff started the Tiger drive inside the opposing red zone. However, a stop on fourth-and-goal from the one-yard line spoiled Clemson’s attempt to tie the game at 24.
Late in the quarter, Cunningham went into the injury tent with an apparent leg injury after a run towards the sideline. The Louisville offense struggled to get anything going with their star quarterback on the sidelines.
Potter’s 34-yard field goal cut the lead to four with just over 10 minutes to play in the contest. Uiagalelei’s eight-yard touchdown run on the next drive with 4:12 remaining in the game gave the Tigers their first lead, 27-24.
Cunningham re-entered the game in the fourth quarter for Louisville and attempted to lead a late comeback after the Tigers increased their lead to six on another Potter field goal. The Cardinal comeback fell just short at the goal line.
The Cardinals fall to 4-5 on the season and will host Syracuse next Saturday for a noon kickoff at Cardinal Stadium.
Below, you can watch the postgame pressers featuring Coach Scott Satterfield, Malik Cunningham, Caleb Chandler, and CJ Avery.