Florida State 17, North Carolina State 10
Wyatt Sexton completed only five passes, was sacked five times and spent most of the night running from tacklers.
Still, his team won, thanks to a defense every bit as stingy as the one on the other side of the field.
"I love 'em, that's all I can say," Sexton said of his defensive teammates.
Lorenzo Booker and James Coleman each ran for third-quarter touchdowns, helping No. 11 Florida State rally past North Carolina State on Thursday night in a game that featured 22 punts, 4 turnovers and less than 250 yards of combined offense.
"It was a defensive war from the very beginning," Seminoles Coach Bobby Bowden said. "I hadn't seen a defensive battle like that in a long time. Totally dominating."
Florida State (8-2, 6-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) went deep into the second quarter before its yardage total exceeded the number of plays. Sexton finished 5 for 18 for only 73 yards, and leading rusher Leon Washington was held to 56 yards on 18 carries.
After spending the entire first half on its own side of midfield, Florida State started all five of its drives in the third quarter in N.C. State territory. Coleman capped the first one with a one-yard plunge to make it 10-7. After a three-and-out by the Wolfpack, the Seminoles needed to drive only 35 yards for the go-ahead score on a four-yard run by Booker. Gary Cismesia added a 44-yard field goal late in the quarter to complete the scoring.
The lone touchdown for the Wolfpack (4-6, 3-5) came on Darrell Blackman's 87-yard punt return in the second quarter that gave it a 10-0 lead. N.C. State had only one first down -- on a pass interference penalty -- and 26 yards in the final two periods.