The Skyhawks defeated the Cumberland Bulldogs 63-7 during a soggy night of football.
UTM (1-2) looked to rebound after dropping their first two games to Kentucky and Central Arkansas. The Skyhawks were 0-3 all-time against the Bulldogs (1-1) with the last meeting dating back to 1948.
“It’s good to get a win under our belts now. It’s been a tough two weeks,” said Jason Simpson, UTM’s head coach. “Regardless, we executed enough. We have a ton of stuff to clean up. … We got a win under our belt and now we start conference play next week.”
The game started with both squads unable to capitalize on offense. The only points scored in the first quarter was on an 8-yard touchdown pass by Jarod Neal to Corey Jordan at the 10:48 mark. After the first quarter, the Skyhawks started to put points on the board.
The Skyhawks scored four touchdowns in the second quarter, the first came from the legs of Abou Toure from three yards out. The Skyhawks continued to pounce as Neal connected on a 18-yard touchdown pass to Kevin Anderson that pushed the lead to 21 points. Trent Garland ran a 15-yard touchdown and Dylan Favre threw a 8-yard touchdown pass to William Tanner, which gave the Skyhawks a 35-0 lead at halftime.
The Bulldogs opened the second half with a 41-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Reed Gurchiek to Michael Green. The Skyhawks answered back on the next drive as Neal connected on a 6-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Kerrick. The Skyhawks continued the scoring, as Favre scored on a 1-yard keeper in the third quarter and Toure scored on a 4-yard run six seconds into the fourth quarter. Quarterback Manny Stocker ran for a 70-yard touchdown during his first snap and playing time as a Skyhawk. The Skyhawks coasted the rest of the way and picked up the victory over the Bulldogs 63-7.
The Skyhawks moved the ball very well in the game, racking up 621-yards of total offense. UTM ran for 320-yards and passed for 301-yards.
Both Neal and Favre had great games at quarterback, with Neal completing 15 out of his 18 passes for 199-yards and 3 touchdowns. Favre completed 11 out of his 13 passes for 103-yards. He scored a passing touchdown and a rushing touchdown.
Toure led in the rushing category, running for 123-yards off of 20 carries and two touchdowns. Trent Garland also had eight carries for 70-yards and a touchdown.
Receiving, Kerrick caught six passes for 65-yards and a touchdown. Tanner caught four passes for 86-yards and a touchdown.
The Skyhawks had a good night on defense, holding the Bulldogs to 161-yards of total offense and seven points. The highlight for UTM’s defense was in the first half, when UTM held the Bulldogs on four straight plays from the 1-yard line, forcing the turnover. Linebacker Tony Bell also intercepted a pass in the second quarter, the first of the season for Bell and the Skyhawks.
The Skyhawks will open up conference play next Saturday, Sept. 20, when they take on Eastern Kentucky. Kickoff between the Skyhawks and the Colonels is scheduled for noon.
Featured Photo Credit: (Kali Hill)