James Blackman threw a 40-yard touchdown pass to Auden Tate with 53 seconds remaining as Florida State escaped with a 26-19 victory over Wake Forest to win its first game of the season Saturday at BB&T Field in Winston-Salem, N.C.
The Seminoles (1-2, 1-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) drove into Wake Forest territory with less than two minutes to play but chose to punt on fourth-and-2 from the 42-yard line.
Three plays later, Florida State had the ball back after a punt, and Blackman delivered on the first snap. It was only the second reception of the game for Tate.
Wake Forest worked the ball to the Florida State 38 for a final snap with 6 seconds left, but quarterback John Wolford’s pass was knocked away in the end zone.
Wake Forest (4-1, 1-1) was aiming for its first 5-0 start since 2006, when it won the ACC championship.
It was a much-needed result for the Seminoles, who were the ACC preseason favorites and face a make-up home game next week against undefeated Miami.
Running back Jacques Patrick scored the only other Florida State touchdown on a 1-yard run in the second quarter. Patrick finished with 120 rushing yards on 19 carries.
Wake Forest went ahead early in the fourth quarter on Matt Colburn’s 7-yard run.
Two possessions later, Florida State pulled even with 6:20 to play on Ricky Aguayo’s 35-yard field goal. It was his fourth field goal of the game, also connecting from 51, 27 and 37 yards.
Mike Weaver kicked field goals of 24 and 39 yards for Wake Forest, but he also missed an extra point.
Blackman, a freshman, finished 11 of 21 for 121 yards in his second career start.
Wolford threw for 271 yards on 24-for-34 passing. Greg Dortch caught 10 passes for 110 yards.
Wolford ran 3 yards for a second-quarter touchdown as the Demon Deacons built a 12-3 lead.