Gamecocks hang on to beat Kentucky

Damiere Byrd poses for the crowd after scoring on a 62-yard TD catch in the first quarter.

The 13th ranked South Carolina Gamecocks held on to beat the Kentucky Wildcats 35-28, before a crowd of 82,313 at Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia. The Gamecocks raced to a 21-0 lead, and held off a furious rally by Kentucky to improve to 4-1 overall, 2-1 in the SEC.

South Carolina quarterback Connor Shaw completed 17 of 20 passes for 262 yards and one touchdown. His TD throw was a 62-yard strike to Damiere Byrd to give the Gamecocks a 7-0 lead. Shaw also ran for a TD, rushing for 50 yards on nine carries.

Kentucky tried to come back in the second half. Quarterback Jalen Whitlow threw two TD passes and ran for another to pull the Wildcats within seven points of the lead with 4:02 remaining in the game. Kentucky outscored South Carolina 21-8 in the fourth quarter.

Gamecocks sophomore running back Mike Davis, who leads the SEC in rushing, carried the ball 21 times for 106 yards and two scores. Lake City High product Shon Carson had three carries for seven yards. He also had one catch for seven yards.

South Carolina star defensive end Jadeveon Clowney missed the game with bruised ribs.

Former Darlington High star Victor Hampton made one tackle for the Gamecocks.

It was the Gamecocks 13th win over Kentucky in their last 14 meetings.

South Carolina will start a three game road trip at Arkansas next Saturday, October 12. Kickoff is set for 12:21 p.m. EST.