Finley, Thomas lead NC State past Georgia State, 41-7

DeAndre Applin #24 of the Georgia State Panthers tackles Thayer Thomas #87 of the North Carolina State Wolfpack during their game at Carter-Finley Stadium on September 8, 2018 in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

Ryan Finley threw two touchdown passes, and North Carolina State routed Georgia State 41-7 on Saturday.

Finley was 31 of 38 for 370 yards with a 5-yard touchdown pass to Thayer Thomas and a 1-yard score to Trent Pennix. His yardage total was the second-best of his career, behind only his 415-yard performance against South Carolina in last year's opener.

Reggie Gallaspy II had a short scoring run, Brady Bodine (39 yards) and Matthew McKay (2 yards) added late TDs and Christopher Dunn kicked two field goals. The Wolfpack (2-0) scored on their first three possessions, scored the game's final 41 points, rolled up 541 total yards and won their 12th straight home nonconference game.

Thomas, a redshirt freshman and former walk-on, finished with nine catches for 114 yards in his first start at slot receiver in place of Jakobi Meyers - who led the team in receiving last week but was held out with an ankle injury. Kelvin Harmon had eight receptions for 129 yards while Stephen Louis, out last week with a tight hamstring, was injured early in the fourth quarter after taking a shot to the helmet while being tackled.

Dan Ellington was 15 of 28 for 194 yards, and Destin Coates had an 8-yard touchdown run that gave the Panthers (1-1) a 7-0 lead.


Georgia State: Despite the loss, the Panthers look like they have a keeper in Ellington, a junior college transfer making his second start at the school. He was responsible for the Panthers' best highlight of the day - a 46-yard pass to Devin Gentry on third-and-4 that set up Coates' scoring run - and will be a handful for Sun Belt defenses.

N.C. State: The Wolfpack once again had trouble getting their running game going. They averaged just 2.9 yards per carry in the opener against James Madison and were at 2.5 yards per carry in this one before Bodine skewed the stats with his long scoring run that increased the total to a more palatable 3.8. Gallaspy and Pennix shouldered much of the load with freshman Ricky Person Jr. not in uniform.


Georgia State: Pays a visit to Memphis on Friday night.

N.C. State: Plays host to No. 14 West Virginia on Saturday in the Wolfpack's marquee nonconference game of the season.


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