Chase Brice leads White to spring game win on picture-perfect day in Clemson

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by - Senior Writer -
Tee Higgins catches an early pass Saturday
Tee Higgins catches an early pass Saturday

CLEMSON – A big crowd, a stadium full of high-profile recruits, a sun-splashed afternoon in Death Valley and a National Championship ring ceremony all provided the backdrop for a near-perfect day in Clemson.

Chase Brice led a couple of early scoring drives and the White defeated the Orange 30-10 at Clemson Memorial Stadium Saturday afternoon in the Clemson spring game in front of an announced crowd of 60,000. With several of the top prospects on hand to watch the proceedings, Brice connected with freshman receiver Frank Ladson three times for 69 yards in the decisive first half.

Brice finished the day completing 10-of-19 passes for 165 yards and a score. Trevor Lawrence was 19-of-34 for 232 yards, a touchdown and an interception. Ladson ended the day with five catches for 102 yards, while Joseph Ngata had five catches for 127 yards. Tight end Braden Galloway had four catches for 33 yards and a touchdown.

The first few drives looked like a typical spring, but Chase Brice led the White on the game’s first scoring drive midway through the first quarter. The drive started with a 15-yard completion for a first down to Frank Ladson, and continued when Justyn Ross caught a 32-yarder over Derion Kendrick. Ross went high and brought the ball down with one hand. A 23-yard pass to TJ Chase set up a 15-yard scoring pass to Braden Galloway, completing a 95-yard drive that took eight plays. With 6:45 to play in the first quarter the White held a 7-0 lead.

The Orange had to grind it out for their first score of the game, traveling 70 yards in 12 plays and 4:40 off the clock. Lawrence hit Tee Higgins on two nice passes, the last one covering six yards for a touchdown on a crossing route in the back of the end zone. With 11:30 to play in the half, the score was tied at 7-7.

The White answered on the ensuing drive, and it was another Brice to Ladson pass that set the stage. Brice targeted Ladson on the first play of the drive, but the pass fell on the incomplete. On the second play of the drive, Ladson broke free down the sideline, and Brice floated a 42-yarder that gave the White the ball at the Orange 39-yard line. Seven plays later Steven Sawicki hit a 25-yard field goal and it was 10-7 White late in the first half.

The teams traded punts and the Orange took over at their own seven with just over two minutes left to go in the half. A swing pass to Carter Groomes was fumbled (forced by Sheridan Jones) and the White recovered (by K’Von Wallace) on the 12-yard line. Two plays later Darien Rencher carried it in from nine yards out and the White led 17-7 with 1:43 to go in the first half.

The Orange answered with a final score before the half, putting together a 10-play, 61-yard drive that ended with a 30-yard field goal from BT Potter. The teams went to the locker room with the White winning 17-10.

Sawicki added to the scoring in the third quarter, nailing a 43-yard field goal that gave the White a 20-10 lead, and midway through the fourth quarter hit another 43-yarder for a 23-10 lead. The final score came when Sheridan Jones stepped in front of a Ben Batson pass and returned it 42 yards for a touchdown with 1:04 left to play.

The Tigers return to action on August 29 against Georgia Tech in Death Valley. It will be the first game in the launch of the ACC Network, which will go on air a week earlier than the opener, on Aug. 22.

Prior to the contest, the program honored its team award-winners from the 2018 season. A full list of those award-winners is included below:

Danny Lee Ford Scholarship Award: Alex Spence
Bank of America — Hamilton Offensive MVP Award: Travis Etienne and Trevor Lawrence
Morrow Defensive MVP Award: Clelin Ferrell and Christian Wilkins
Edisto Clemson Club Offensive Football Player of the South Carolina Game: Offensive Line
IFC Defensive Player of the South Carolina Game: Austin Bryant
Joe Francis Football Leadership Award: Adam Choice, Mitch Hyatt, Hunter Renfrow, Clelin Ferrell, Christian Wilkins, Kendall Joseph
Renwick-Flanders Most Improved Football Player Award: Denzel Johnson, Albert Huggins, Isaiah Simmons, John Simpson, Gage Cervenka, Chase Brice, Nolan Turner
Coffman Cup presented by the Nieri Center: Defense
FWAA Shaun Alexander Freshman Player of the Year Award: Trevor Lawrence


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