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Florida 37, Florida State 26

The SportsXchange

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Despite a first half in which nothing went right for Florida State, the No. 10 Seminoles found themselves in control early in the fourth quarter, inching toward a third straight victory over No. 4 Florida.

Then in one moment, one hit, it all unraveled.

With less than 13 minutes to play, Florida's Antonio Morrison laid a thundering hit on Florida State quarterback EJ Manuel, forcing a fumble that Dominique Easley recovered for the Gators.

On the next play, Mike Gillislee ran 37 yards for touchdown and the Gators scored 24 unanswered points to beat the Seminoles, 37-26, on Saturday at Doak Campbell Stadium.

Florida State turned the ball over five times, four by Manuel, who threw three interceptions and had the big fumble. Manuel, who missed a series after Morrison's big hit, ran 22 yards for a touchdown on the last play of the game.

The Gators (12-1) dominated for much of the two quarters and were unfortunate not to lead by more than 13-3 at halftime.

Florida possessed the ball for 21:58 in the first half, but had only two field goals by Caleb Sturgis Gillislee's nine-yard touchdown run to show for it.

Dustin Hopkins' 50-yard field goal as time expired in the second quarter appeared innocuous, but it started a run of 20 consecutive points by Florida State.

The Seminoles had the ball and momentum when Morrison jarred the fumble loose. After Gillislee's go-ahead touchdown, backup Clint Trickett entered the game but could muster no more than a three-and-out.

Florida's Marcus Roberson returned the ensuing punt to Florida State's 29-yard line, and five plays later Jeff Driskel threw his only touchdown pass, a 14-yarder to Quinton Dunbar that effectively sealed the victory.

Using a variety of short and intermediate passes, Driskel completed 15-of-24 passes for 147 yards and a touchdown.

Florida touched up Florida State for 243 yards on the ground, led by Gillislee's 140 yards and two touchdowns. Matt Jones added another 81 yards and a touchdown.

NOTES: Junior defensive end Bjoern Werner of Florida State had 2 1/2 sacks, giving him 12 in 2012 with two games remaining. Werner's season is the seventh best season all-time at Florida State. ... Dustin Hopkins' 53-yard field goal gave him 87 for his career, a number that tied Georgia's Billy Bennett for the most field goals in Football Bowl Subdivision history. ...Rodney Smith had a four-yard reception in the second quarter for Florida State, extending his streak of consecutive games with a reception to 37 games, one shy of the school record.
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