JACKSONVILLE, DEC. 31 -- Tom Hodson threw three touchdown passes to Wendell Davis and David Browndyke kicked three field goals as seventh-ranked Louisiana State beat ninth-ranked South Carolina, 30-13, today in the 43rd annual Gator Bowl.
Davis, who is LSU's all-time leading receiver, scored on pass plays covering 39, 12 and 26 yards and Browndyke kicked field goals of 27, 18 and 23 yards.
Hodson's first two scoring passes to Davis came in the first five minutes of the game as the Tigers took a 14-0 lead.
They opened a 27-6 lead before South Carolina (8-4) scored its only touchdown -- on a 10-yard run by Harold Green at the start of the fourth quarter.
South Carolina quarterback Todd Ellis was intercepted four times and was sacked seven times for losses totaling 62 yards.
Under first-year coach Mike Archer, LSU posted its first 10-victory season (10-1-1) since 1961 and ended a string of four straight bowl losses. South Carolina is winless in seven bowl appearances.
The Tigers took a 7-0 lead when Davis caught a sideline pass and eluded three tacklers on the 39-yard scoring play. That scoring drive was set up when Tommy Clapp sacked Ellis for a 20-yard loss, forcing the Gamecocks to punt from their 16.
On South Carolina's next offensive series, Greg Jackson picked off Ellis' pass and returned it 48 yards to set up Hodson's second scoring pass.
Davis, who caught nine passes for 132 yards, pulled in a perfectly thrown ball by Hodson in the corner of the end zone with 9:59 left in the opening quarter to make it 14-0.
South Carolina then took advantage of LSU's first turnover, a fumble by Davis at his 32, to set up a 44-yard field goal by Collin Mackie.
In the second period, Browndyke kicked field goals of 27 and 18 yards and Mackie had a 39-yarder as LSU went into the locker room with a 20-6 lead.
The Tigers took a 27-6 lead when Davis grabbed a 26-yard pass from Hodson to climax their opening drive of the second half.
LSU forced five South Carolina turnovers.
South Carolina 3 3 0 7 13 Louisiana State 14 6 7 3 30
LSU -- Davis 39 pass from Hodson (Browndyke kick)
LSU -- Davis 12 pass from Hodson (Browndyke kick)
SC -- FG Mackie 44
LSU -- FG Browndyke 27
SC -- FG Mackie 39
LSU -- FG Browndyke 18
LSU -- Davis 26 pass from Hodson (Browndyke kick)
SC -- Green 10 run (Mackie kick)
LSU -- FG Browndyke 23
A -- 82,119
S. Carolina LSU First downs 21 17 Rushes-yards 33-25 39-122 Passing yards 304 224 Return yards 9 149 Passing 28-47-4 20-32-0 Punts-average 2-41 3-38 Fumbles-lost 2-1 5-3 Penalties-yards 6-49 5-107 Ti
RUSHING -- South Carolina: Green 15-72, Bethea 1-9, Bing 4-7, Sharpe 2-minus 2, Ellis 11-minus 61. Louisian
PASSING -- South Carolina: Ellis 28-47-4, 304 yards. Louisiana State: Hodson 20-32-0, 224.
RECEIVING -- South Carolina: Green 7-45, Sharpe 6-53, Smith 4-79, Bethea 4-69. Louisiana State: Davis 9-132