The MissouriSouthern football team raced out to a 27-7 lead against Southwest Baptist, butthe Bearcats would score 31 of the final 37 points to defeat the Lions for thesecond-straight year, 38-33 in Plaster Stadium.
Southern(3-1, 3-1 MIAA) had 293 yards in the first half, but just 148 in the secondhalf. The Lions had three interceptions in the first half as BreonMatlock, MichaelBurks and GatlinRidgway had picks.
SBU (1-3, 1-2MIAA) would control the time of possession in the second half holding the ball20 minutes to the Lions' 10.
Southernopened the game and drove the length of the field and for the fourth game in arow, the Lions scored on their opening drive as MichaelNelson took a pitch and went 17 yards for the score.
After aBearcat punt, the Lions drove down the field and lined up for a 44-yard fieldgoal and the kick from SeanSeefeldt was no good. The SBU drive wouldn't last long, however, as twoplays into it, Matlock brought down a Willie Tindal pass for an interceptionSouthern would turn that into points as Jay McDonald dove into the endzone tomake it 13-0. The point after was no good.
On the verynext drive, the Lions again had an interception, as this time, Burks picked offa Tindal pass and returned it 24 yards to the SBU 24 yard line. ChrisBarnwell did all the work on the drive and turned the interception into atouchdown run as he ran the ball four times on the drive, giving the Lions a20-0 lead.
The Bearcatsanswered back with a pair of touchdown passes for Tindal, one for ten yards toDerwyn Lauderdale and the other an 86-yard catch to Evan Ray. Those scores weresandwiched around a 23-yard TerranceAllen touchdown run as the Lions led 27-14 with 6:05 left to go in thehalf.
The Lions hadthe ball one more time in the half, but settled for a punt and gave theBearcats the ball with 2:58 left to go in the half. SBU drove the length of thefield and got to the Southern 18-yard line, but Ridgway came up with the Lions'third interception of the half as time expired, sending Southern into thelocker room with a 27-14 lead.
The Bearcatsscored the only points in the third quarter as Via Via Manuma capped off aseven-play, 79-yard drive with a one-yard touchdown run with 12:55 left in thethird to cut the score to 27-21, Lions. Tindal added a 50-yard touchdown passto Nathan Mourick to give the Bearcats a 28-27 lead.
A 31-yardfield goal gave the Bearcats a 31-27 lead and SBU would then convert an onsidekick and score on the possession to go up 38-27 with 7:18 left in thefourth.
Southernadded a late touchdown by Barnwell, a four-yard run to cap off an 11-play, 77yard scoring drive. The two point conversion would not be good, setting theLions up for an onside kick and trailing 38-33 with 1:03 left to go. SBU,however, would fall on the kick and run out the clock to end the game.
Offensively,Barnwell was the leading rusher for the second week in a row as the juniorrushed for 120 yards on 18 carries and two scores. McDowell, Allen and Nelsonall had rushing touchdowns. McDowell was 7-19 passing for 146 yards through theair.
Defensively,Ridgway led the attack for the Lions with nine stops, a sack and aninterception. DemonHaire had eight tackles, while BrennenNora, RyonPhillips, PacoVarol and EricDago had a sack each as the Lions had five sacks tonight. Burks, Matlockadded interceptions of their own.
The Lionsfinished with 315 yards rushing and 146 yards through the air for 461 yards oftotal offense. They held the ball for nearly 33 minutes, limiting SBU to 27minutes with the ball. Southern was 1-2 on fourth-down conversions, but just8-16 on third down tries. They scored 4-5 times when in the red zone.
Southern willbe back in action next weekend when the Lions play host to Central Missouri onOctober 5. Kickoff from Fred G. Hughes Stadium is slated for 6 pm.
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Tuesday, September 2 2014 11:39 PM EDT2014-09-03 03:39:33 GMT
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