Georgia Tech finally beats Georgia after frantic overtime finish

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It was a finish that fit the upset of an instate rival that had frustrated Georgia Tech immensely over the last 13 years.

Drama to the end

No. 16 Tech led the ninth-ranked Georgia Bulldogs 21-17 with four minutes left, after Zach Laskey took an eight-yard touch in for the score. They looked to be in the driving seat, but beleaguered Georgia quarterback Hutson Mason completed a 69-yard drive with a touchdown to put the Bulldogs ahead 24-21 with 18 seconds left.

For most games, that would be the end of it.

But Georgia Tech rattled off a few quick passes and set up a 53-yard field goal for kicker Harrison Butler. And they watched as it fluttered in, barely over the field goal post, to force overtime.

"What a game!" Georgia Tech Paul Johnson shouted after the Yellow Jackets won in overtime, after the fifth-year Mason threw an interception, after Tech had scored a touchdown on the previous drive. 

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"I have a lot of respect for Georgia's program," Johnson said. "That makes it even that much more impressive for us to be able to come in here and get a win."

Win ends drought

Tech's victory was only its second in the last 14 years and its first since 2008. It came all that much sweeter being in Georgia's much-lauded Sanford Stadium.

The Yellow Jackets were close to going ahead early in the third quarter, coming to the Bulldogs' one-yard line. But quarterback Justin Thomas fumbled the ball and Georgia cornerback Damian Swann swooped it up for a 99-yard return touchdown.

Still, they kept working and finished with 399 rushing yards, dominating the trenches with their triple-option attack and coming out ahead.

Bulldogs left with more questions

Georgia had a Heisman front-runner to start the season and a real shot at the college football playoff. Now it has neither.

Todd Gurley suffered a four-game suspension and then a season-ending injury in his first action back. While Georgia has had a revelation at running back with freshman Nick Chubb, that loss left this team without a lot of its flash.

And while Georgia beat some difficult opponents, including Clemson, Auburn and SEC East-leading Missouri, it suffered embarrassing losses to Florida and South Carolina that ultimately doomed its playoff chances.

The Georgia Tech defeat was the final coffin in an under-performing season that will ultimately leave Bulldog fans with a bitter taste in their mouth.

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