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Martin sparks Vols past Bulldogs, hurts wrist

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- No. 6 Tennessee seemed to have things well in hand Saturday night before Georgia (No. 9 ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll, No. 10 AP) suddenly got back in it. Then the Volunteers' Leonard Scott took off.

Scott's 100-yard kickoff return came after Georgia had trimmed Tennessee's lead to 30-20 with 12½ minutes left to play and let the air out of the Bulldogs' rally as the Vols won 37-20.

Tee Martin
Tee Martin ran for three touchdowns and threw for another to lead the Vols.

"That was a huge lift. It was getting real interesting all of a sudden," Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer said.

Scott, the NCAA 60-meter champion in track, shook off one tackle, and once he got in the open no one was going to catch him.

"Once I got past the guy who hit my leg I looked downfield and only saw one guy left," Scott said. "I saw one of our guys in front of him. I said, 'I've got to set him up some kind of way.' I dipped inside, went back outside, and went on by."

The return was a back-breaker for the Bulldogs, who trailed 30-7 before two quick touchdowns early in the period pulled them within striking distance.

"Our kickoff coverage stinks," Georgia coach Jim Donnan said. "It's been bad all year. That was depressing."

Tee Martin ran for three touchdowns and threw for another to lead the Vols (4-1, 2-1 Southeastern Conference) to their ninth straight victory over the Bulldogs (4-1, 2-1).

The Vols' victory also forged a three-way tie at the top of the SEC Eastern Division among Tennessee, Georgia and Florida.

Before leaving because of injuries in the fourth quarter, Martin led the Vols to 458 total yards. He was 21-of-35 for 283 yards, with a touchdown and two interceptions.

Martin isn't expected to miss Tennessee's next game despite suffering a strained right (throwing) hand, bruised lower leg and a slight-to-moderate concussion.

"He's a warrior, an absolute warrior," Fulmer said. "I wouldn't trade him for anybody, although the kid on the other side was pretty good, too."

Quincy Carter was 20-of-34 for 228 yards and two touchdowns despite heavy pressure most of the night to lead the Bulldogs. Terrence Edwards had five catches for 98 yards and a score.

Cedrick Wilson led the Tennessee receivers with eight catches for 107 yards.

The Bulldogs had been averaging 191 yards a game on the ground this year, but Tennessee held them to 54 yards on 30 carries. Jasper Sanks, who had gone over 100 yards three straight games, had 37 yards on eight carries.

Tennessee took control with a 21-point second quarter for a 28-7 halftime lead, then added the only points of the third quarter on a safety when Georgia punter Wynn Kopp fell on a high center snap at his own goal line.

Georgia made it interesting for a time early in the fourth quarter.

Carter led the Bulldogs on a 71-yard drive to score on a 4-yard pass to Jevaris Johnson with 14:16 left.

On Tennessee's next series, Jamie Henderson intercepted a pass by Martin and returned it 49 yards for a touchdown to narrow the Vols' lead to 30-20 with 12{ minutes to play.

But Scott took the ensuing kickoff 100 yards to extend the margin back to 37-20, much to the relief of most of the crowd of 107,247 who endured a steady, light rain the entire game.

Martin was still erratic throwing the ball early, as he has been since injuring his throwing shoulder against Florida, but several times bailed the Vols out of trouble with timely scrambles.

His three scoring runs all came in the first half and covered 3, 6 and 1 yard. He also scrambled for 22 yards on a third-and-15, and 20 yards to the Georgia 9 to set up a 10-yard touchdown pass to Jamal Lewis.

Martin's third TD run came with 24 seconds left in the half to cap an 82-yard drive in 10 plays to beat the clock and give the Volunteers the 28-7 lead.

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 Tee Martin scrambles in for the score.
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 Jamal Lewis takes the pass in for the touchdown.
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