Shipley’s TD saves Clemson in 30-20 win over Florida State

Will Shipley had 128 yards and 2 touchdowns on the ground in Clemson's 30-20 win over FSU.
Will Shipley had 128 yards and 2 touchdowns on the ground in Clemson's 30-20 win over FSU.(247Noles)
Published: Oct. 30, 2021 at 7:48 PM EDT
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CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) — Will Shipley ran for two touchdowns, including the game-winning 21-yard score with 2:53 left, as Clemson rallied to defeat Florida State 30-20 on Saturday and win its 32nd straight at Death Valley.

The Seminoles (3-5, 2-3 Atlantic Coast Conference) were poised to snap the nearly five-year streak after Jermaine Johnson’s 6-yard fumble recovery TD put them ahead 20-17 halfway through the fourth quarter.

But Clemson’s mostly ineffective offense — they had three turnovers and kicker B.T. Potter missed three field goals — put together a final scoring drive helped by Florida State mistakes. A pass interference penalty on defensive back Kevin Knowles and a hit out of bounds on linebacker DJ Lundy moved the ball to the Florida State 21.

Shipley, the five-star freshman, took it the rest of the way on the next snap, twisting through several defenders before lunging into the end zone.

Florida State got the ball twice more after that, but could not get out of its own territory. Clemson linebacker Barrett Carter scored on the final play as the Seminoles’ try at lateraling their way to a touchdown came up way short.

Shipley finished 124 yards and had a 2-yard TD run in the first half.

Clemson (5-3, 4-2) struggled once more to find offensive consistency. DJ Uiagalelei, after apparently coming out on top of backup Taisun Phommachanh in their quarterback competition, directed the Tigers to one field goal in their first four drives.

Clemson found some rhythm in the second quarter. Phil Mafah broke off a 63-yard run inside the Florida State 20 and Uiagalelei finished things off with a perfectly thrown fade pass to tight end Davis Allen for an 11-yard TD.

The Tigers continued their surge the next time they got the ball, pounding in for a 2-yard scoring run to move in front 17-13.

Shipley had 41 yards on five carries during the sequence, which also included Uiagalelei throws of 19 yards to Justyn Ross and 11 to Jake Briningstool.

Florida State found little success against the Clemson defense. However, running back Lawrence Toafili took a pass along the sidelines 75 yards for a score, a run he kept alive by rolling over — yet not hitting the ground — Clemson defender Sheridan Jones.

Uiagalelei ended 19 of 31 for 189 yards with a touchdown and an interception.

Florida State managed just 271 yards including only 65 on the ground. Jordan Travis had two touchdown passes to keep the Seminoles close.


Florida State: The Seminoles showed strength on defense with their second-half takeaways that nearly gave them their first win at Death Valley since 2013 when then-quarterback Jameis Winston famously called the place his house after a 51-14 victory. This showing should continue to build belief in Mike Norvell’s program after going 0-4 in September.

Clemson: The Tigers have to find a way to put up points after another disappointing show on offense. Clemson finished with just 377 yards, although it scored its most points this season against a FBS opponent helped by a final-play defensive touchdown as the Seminoles attempted to lateral their way to the end zone.


Florida State returns home to face North Carolina State on Saturday.

Clemson plays its last ACC road game of the season at Louisville on Saturday.