HOUSTON (AP) — Kellen Mond threw for 221 yards and a touchdown and ran for a second score as Texas A&M extended its winning streak to four games with a 30-6 win over South Carolina on Saturday night.
With just four wins and one game left the loss guarantees that the Gamecocks (4-7, 3-5 Southeastern Conference) won’t make a bowl game for the first time in four seasons.
South Carolina fell to 0-6 all-time against Texas A&M and lost its second straight game this season after falling to Appalachian State last week.
The Aggies led by 10 at halftime and neither team could get anything going after the break, combining for six punts in the third quarter. South Carolina went three-and-out twice and the Aggies punted after just three plays once.
Texas A&M (7-3, 4-2) was finally able to sustain a drive when it capped a 14-play drive with a 40-yard field goal which extended the lead to 16-3 early in the fourth quarter.
The Aggies forced a fourth straight punt by South Carolina after that and Mond made it 22-3 with a 1-yard TD dive with about 10 minutes left. Richardson set up that score when he scampered 31 yards a play earlier.
South Carolina went for it on fourth-and-8 on its next drive and couldn’t convert. Richardson’s long touchdown ran came two plays later to pad the lead.
Ryan Hilinski threw for 175 yards for South Carolina in a game where the Aggies held the Gamecocks to just 45 yards rushing.
Isaiah Spiller added 129 yards rushing for Texas A&M.
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The game was tied early in the second quarter after both teams scored a field goal in the first quarter when Mond found Richardson wide open for a 17-yard touchdown reception to give A&M a 10-3 lead.
Seth Small missed a 42-yard field goal on Texas A&M’s next possession, but made one from 30 yards with less than a minute left in the second quarter to leave the Aggies up 13-3 at halftime.
South Carolina: The Gamecocks didn’t make any big mistakes but had trouble keeping drives going as they lost for the fourth time in five games. With a bowl game off the table they’ll be playing for pride when they wrap up their season in two weeks with a visit from rival No. 3 Clemson.
Texas A&M: The Aggies did plenty to beat struggling South Carolina, but will need to execute much better on offense consistently if they hope to upset one of two (No. 4 Georgia and No. 1 LSU) the top-5 teams they have coming up in the next two weeks.
South Carolina: The Gamecocks are off next Saturday before ending their season against Clemson on Nov. 30.
Texas A&M: Visits No. 5 Georgia next Saturday before a trip to top-ranked LSU in two weeks to wrap up the regular season.