Clemson, S.C. —The last few weeks, the Clemson Tigers has been really locked in and been playing Tigers football for sixty-minutes.
DJ Uiagalei threw darts all over the field and led Clemson (9-1, 7-0 ACC) to a 31-16 win over Louisville (6-4, 3-4 ACC) on Military Appreciation Day on Saturday afternoon.
The Tigers won its 39th consecutive home game to extend the longest home winning streak in ACC history and tie the 2005-11 Oklahoma Sooners for the ninth-longest home winning streak in FBS history.
In their initial possession of the game, they marched down field in 12-plays, 75-yard scoring drive. A 24-yard pass to Joseph Ngata on third-and-15 started set it all up, and Uiagalelei punched it from 11-yards out, his fifth touchdown of the season.
The Tigers’ defense shut down Louisville’s next drive and forced the Cardinals to go three-and-out in back-to-back drives. B.T. Potter booted a FG for Clemson to make it 10-0 with 2:25 left in the first quarter.
Tiyon Evans short touchdown run got Louisville off the donut with 14:17 left in the first half, making the score 10-7. But Uiagaleli marched his troops 80 yards in a drive that took up more than 3:40 of the clock. Then the seasoned quarterback hit Antonio Williams for a four yard touchdown pass that put the Tigers up 17-7 at the break.
“We definitely wanted to play great tonight, we wanted to dominate,” Uiagalelei said. “We wanted to get back on track to how we play offense.”
The Tigers came out of halftime on a mission. A 54-yard reception from Tyler Hudson gave the Cardinals the ball inside the Tigers five-yard line, but Clemson’s defense held tight with a goal-line stand. Louisville had to settle for a 22-yard field goal, making the score 24-10.
Running back Phil Mafah sealed the win with a 39-yard touchdown for Clemson late in the fourth quarter. The Cardinals scored another touchdown on the game’s final play to make the final score 31-16.
Clemson improved to improve to 8-0 all-time over Louisville (6-4, 3-4). The Cardinals, who came in with a four-game win streak, played the second half without standout quarterback Malik Cunningham who got hurt on the last play of the second quarter.
“There’s a lot of positive to take from this game,” Louisville Scott Satterfield said. “We go back to our place next week, Senior Day, we’ve got to regroup.”
Louisville plays its final regular-season home game vs. No. 17 North Carolina State on Saturday.
Clemson closes its ACC regular season against Miami on Saturday.