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Wake Forest hangs on to knock off FSU in key ACC matchup

The Deacs steal a big one to knock the Seminoles from the ranks of the undefeated.

 Sam Hartman #10 of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons drops back to pass against the Clemson Tigers at Truist Field on September 24, 2022 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Clemson won 51-45 in 2OT. Photo by Lance King/Getty Images

The No. 22 Wake Forest Demon Deacons hung onto a lead they almost conceded to defeat the No. 23 Florida State Seminoles 31-21 on Saturday at Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee, Florida.

Wake Forest (4-1, 1-1 ACC) QB Sam Hartman, who returned after missing the first game of the season following surgery to cure a blood clot caused by Paget-Schroetter syndrome, went 22-for-34 for 234 yards and two touchdowns. A.T. Perry led the a strong wide receiving corps for the Demon Deacons with 91 receiving yards on eight catches.

Running backs Justice Ellison and Christian Turner combined for 38 carries and 178 yards to give balance to an offense that needed the win to stay in contention in the ACC Atlantic.

Florida State (4-1, 1-1 ACC) drops out of the select few undefeated teams left in college football following Week 5 and lose their top spot in the ACC standings. FSU quarterback Jordan Travis went 23-for-35 today for 281 yards and three touchdowns, but committed a crucial turnover in the second quarter.

A pair of missed field goals from kicker Ryan Fitzgerald, including a 55-yarder with 1:13 remaining, also forced some crucial empty possessions for the home team.

Wake Forest will face Army next weekend while Florida State takes on No. 10 NC State.