LSU 12, AU 10: News, Notes & Quotes, Part 2

Comments from Corey Lemonier and news and notes from the Auburn-LSU game are featured.

Auburn, Ala.--All-SEC defensive end Corey Lemonier said Auburn players can't afford to worry about what outsiders are saying about the 1-3 Tigers.

"That's not our concern," the junior said. "Our focus is on what we can do to improve as a football team."

Auburn had its best effort of the season Saturday against the nation's second-ranked team, the LSU Tigers, before falling 12-10 in the SEC home opener at Jordan-Hare Stadium.

The defense especially took a strong step forward in holding LSU to one touchdown and a field goal. The decisive two points came on a safety in The Opening quarter. Auburn took a 10-9 lead into the half, but couldn't get any more points on the board as the Tigers limited LSU to a field goal in the second half.

"Our young tackles really stepped up tonight," Lemonier said. "Really, the whole defense stepped up. They have really been working hard in practice. I think tonight shows the younger players how good they can be. It's just starting for them.

"It's going to be good to see what they do in the future," added Lemonier, who only had three tackles, but two were for sacks totaling 15 yards in losses. That gives him five sacks for the season.

His first-quarter sack of LSU quarterback Zach Mettenberger forced a fumble recovered by tackle Angelo Blackson at the LSU 26. Three plays later Onterio McCalebb scored on a four-yard run to cut LSU's lead to 9-7 following Cody Parkey's extra point.

"They tried to cut me, but I was able to get around the blocker and get to the quarterback," Lemonier said in describing the play. "I forced the fumble and Angelo recovered. The offense took it in and it was a huge momentum swing. After Cody's field goal we went in leading 10-9 at the half."

Lemonier said the Tigers felt their confidence building, but needed to finish the game out with a win. "With a bye week before we play Arkansas, we need to heal, watch film and practice to get better," he added.

On other news and notes:

*Onterio McCalebb now has 1,058 career kick return yards. He is the first player in Auburn history to total more than 2,000 rushing, 1,000 kick return and 500 receiving yards. The last SEC player to do so was Derrick Locke of Kentucky ( 2007-10) with 2,618 rushing, 883 receiving and 1,464 in kickoff returns. McCalebb nearly broke a kickoff following a field goal to give LSU a 12-10 in the third quarter. McCalebb was pulled down after returning 43 yards.

*McCalebb's rushing touchdown was the 20th of his career, tying him for 10th all-time with Cam Newton (2010). It was McCalebb's 25th career touchdown overall.

*Junior Cody Parkey's 40-yard second-quarter field goal was his ninth consecutive dating back through last season, the longest Auburn streak since Wes Byrum had nine in a row from 2009-10.

*Steven Clark's 54-yard punt in the first quarter was his longest of the 2012 season. His career long is 58 yards against Mississippi in 2011.

*True freshman quarterback Jonathan Wallace saw his first career action in the second quarter. He is the 19th player to see action for the first time this season for the Tigers.

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