CLINTON, S.C. – The Presbyterian College football team fell to eighth-ranked Chattanooga, 21-0, in a defensive affair on Saturday night at Bailey Memorial Stadium. The Blue Hose fell to 1-3 on the season, while the Mocs improved to 3-1 on the year.
Donelle Williams recorded a career-high-tying 18 tackles to lead the PC defensive unit that held Chattanooga to its second lowest point total of the season, through four games. Ed Britt recorded both PC takeaways on the night, grabbing his team-leading fifth career interception and his first fumble recovery of the season while totaling 13 tackles.
Darrell Bridges once again led the Mocs on offense with 87 rushing yards on just 12 carries for an average of 7.3 yards per carry. Ben Cheek went 5-for-10 passing for a career-high 38 yards in just his third game for PC. Stephen Doar had a strong punting effort for the Blue Hose, kicking eight times for a season-best average of 39.9 yards per punt with three stopping inside the opponent’s 20-yard line and his long of the night measuring 50 yards.
The Presbyterian offense struggled to move the ball against a stoudt front seven for the Mocs, totaling just 117 yards and seven first downs on the night. It was the first time since becoming Division I in 2007 that PC was shutout by an FCS opponent.
Chattanooga got on the board first after taking possession on a Presbyterian turnover. UTC quarterback Jacob Huesman scored on the Mocs’ third play from scrimmage to give his team a 7-0 advantage less than two minutes in to the contest.
The Mocs would add to their lead with a 38-yard touchdown pass from Huesman to Xavier Borishade on the first play of the second quarter. The score capped off an eight-play, 88-yard drive for the Mocs that spanned 2:56 to put them ahead 14-0 with 14:53 left to play in the half.
Chattanooga’s following drive ended on a highlight-reel, diving interception by Britt in the endzone and set up PC’s best offensive drive of the game. The Blue Hose went 69 yards on nine plays and took 5:00 off the clock. The drive would stall, though, at the UTC 31-yard line and PC was forced to punt.
The Mocs’ would tack on its final score of the game on a defensive touchdown on the first play of the fourth quarter. A pass by Cheek was deflected at the line-of-scrimmage and Toyvian Brand snagged it out of the air and returned it 44 yards for the score to push the UTC lead to the eventual final score of 21-0.
Chattanooga closed out the game by holding the ball for 12:50 in the fourth quarter to win the time of possession battle for the game, 38:30 to 21:30. The Mocs also edged PC 3-2 in the turnover battle, marking the first time this season that the Blue Hose committed more turnovers than their opponent.
Huesman completed 11-of-17 passes for 107 yards and one touchdown, while also leading the Mocs on the ground with 132 rushing yards and one touchdown on 23 carries. Derrick Craine added 82 rushing yards on 17 carries, as UTC totaled 293 yards on the ground as a team.
The Blue Hose will return to action next Saturday, October 3, when the team travels to Western Carolina for a matchup with the Catamounts at 3:30 p.m.