Saturday, October 20, 2012
- by B.B. Branton
Chattanooga football coach Russ Huesman's "keys to victory" are no turnovers, play solid defense and play well on special teams.
The Mocs followed the blue print in their 20-13 home win against Samford Saturday night at Finley Stadium - no turnovers for the third straight game ... held the opposition to under 300 total yards .. kicker Nick Pollard had two field goals, two extra points, and 44.5 punting average - to improve to 4-3 overall and 3-1 in the Southern Conference.
"The guys did really well in those three areas which is vital for winning football," said coach Huesman.
Chattanooga quarterback Jacob Huesman rushed for one touchdown and passed for another to lead the Mocs offense. He led the Mocs with 64 rushing yards and added 164 passing yards.
Samford's Andy Summerlin was 27 of 40 through the air for 191 yards and one interception, while Fabian Truss rushed for 29 yards on 11 carries and one touchdown for the Bulldogs.
Samford's Kelsey Pope led all receivers with 12 catches for 78 yards, while UTC's Terrell Robinson led the Mocs with nine receptions for 65 yards.
Good Mocs "D": "To hold Truss to 29 yards rushing (his lowest total this season) is a tribute to our defense," said coach Huesman.
Truss (658 rushing yards on the season) entered the UTC game averaging 94 yards a game with three, 100-yard games.
Playing before an announced crowd of 7, 103, the Mocs, who have now won three straight conference games for the second time in three seasons, led 20-6 at the end of three quarters, but had to hold off a Samford rally late in the fourth quarter.
The Bulldogs had a field goal (47 yards by Cameron Yaw at 12:13) and a touchdown (1 yard run by Fabian Truss) with 3:35 remaining.
Samford got the ball back with 1:54 on the clock and an Andy Summerlin "Hail Mary" pass into the Mocs end zone was knocked away by Mocs Sema'je Kendall as the game ended.
The Mocs have won four straight against Samford and lead the series 26-9-3.
"Here we are at the end of October and we are in the thick of the Southern Conference race," said Huesman. "We are winning because we have good players and it is important to those guys to win."
The Mocs are in third place in the SoCon (3-1), trailing league-leader Georgia Southern (5-1) and second place Wofford (4-1).
First Half Scoring: UTC took a 10-0 lead in the second quarter as Pollard's 29-yard field goal was at 12:13, while Huesman scored on a 1-yard run 28 seconds before halftime.
Miller INT Sets Up Huesman Score: UTC linebacker Gunner Miller intercepted a Summerlin pass at the UTC 44, returning it 17 yards to the Samford 39 with 4:37 before halftime. Huesman scored eight plays later..
Affter Huesman's score, Samford's Cameron Yaw connected on a career-long 52-yard field goal at the horn to put the Bulldogs on the board.
Samford set up Yaw's field goal with a Kelsey Pope 32 yard kickoff return to the UTC 49 after Huesman's touchdown run. The Bulldogs ran two plays netting 14 yards to the Mocs 35 before Yaw's field goal.
Third Quarter: The Mocs scored 10 points in the third quarter for the 20-3 lead after holding a 10-3 advantage at halftime.
Pollard connected on a 36-yard field goal - his second, 3-pointer of the game - at 10:13 of the third, followed by a Huesman-to-Marquis Green 16-yard touchdown scoring pass play with 50 seconds remaining in the quarter.
The touchdown drive was 56 yards on five plays in a time of 2:37.
Samford answered with 10 points of its own on a Yaw 47-yard field gaol at 12:13, followed by a Truss 1-yard run at 3:35.
Missed Opportunity: Trailing 20-6 with 5:14 remaining in the game, Samford receiver Gavin Sinclair was wide open in the end zone, but dropped a 34 yard pass from Andy Summerlin ...
... but the Bulldogs did score on that drive - 1:39 later - on Truss' 1-yard run with 3:35 ... scoring drive was 83 yards, 13 plays, 4:49 time of possession.
Defensive Standouts: UTC's Wes Dothard led the Mocs with 11 tackles, followed by Gunner Miller (6 tackles, 1 INT), Davis Tull (5 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 2 QB Sacks), Zack Rayl (5 tackles, 2.4 tackles for loss, 1 QB Sack
Furman was led by Durell Hill - game high 12 tackles, along with Nicholas Williams (2 tackles, 1 QB sack, 2 tackles for loss) and Keith Shoulders (9 tackles).
Sack Leader: Mocs Davis Tull had two sacks against Samford and continues to lead the Southern Conference with eight.
Chattanooga 20, Samford 13
Samford 0 - 3- 0 -10 -- 13
UTC 0 -10 - 10 - 0 -- 20
Records: UTC (4-3, 3-1), Samford (5-3, 3-3)
First Downs: Samford, 16-13
Rushing Yards: UTC, 71-69
Passing Yards: Samford, 190-179
Total Offense: Samford, 259-250
Punting Average: UTC, 44.5 to 30.5
Possession Time: UTC, 33:07 to 26:53
Third Down Conversions: UTC (7 of 16), Samford (6 of 17)
Fourth Down Conversions: Samford (2-2), UTC (1-1)
QB Sacks By: UTC (3-25), Samford (1-19)
Shout Out to Coach Pat Sullivan: On the Mocs radio post-game show, UTC coach Huesman sent his best to Samford head coach Pat Sullivan who did not make the trip due to having pneumonia ... Sullivan won the Heisman Trophy at Auburn in 1971 and is a cancer survivor.
First Career TD: UTC's Marquis Green caught his first career touchdown pass in the third quarter ... a 16 yard pass from Jacob Huesman.
UTC Freshman Passing Record: Jacob Huesman now is the first freshman in UTC history to have at least 100 pass completions in a season (107)...
Halftime lead - The Mocs have led at halftime in four games, trailed on one and was tied (App State) in one.
Bulldog on the Run: Samford's Kelsey Pope had kick-off returns for 32 and 45 yards ... the 45 yarder set up Samford's first field goal.
contact B.B. Branton at email@example.com