Blue Hose Drop Big South Opener to VMI, 17-7
The VMI offense stayed on the field for over 35 minutes, while the defense held the Blue Hose Offense to just 45 total yards in the first half en route to the 17-7 win over the Presbyterian College football team in Big South action this afternoon at Foster Stadium in Lexington, Va.
PC drops to 2-4 overall and 0-1 in the Big South, while VMI improves to 2-3, 1-0.
Leading the Blue Hose on offense was Lance Byrd, who ran the ball 71 yards off 12 carries. He was followed by Demarcus Rouse who had five carries for 28 yards. Anderico Bailey caught five passes for 69 yards, while Arthur Williams ended the afternoon with 37 yards off five receptions. Jeremiah McKie posted the team's only score with his 23-yard catch in the fourth quarter. Jabari Turner led the Keydets with 20 carries for 73 yards and one TD, while Aaron Lewis led them in the air with six catches for 82 yards.
Tamyn Garrick started for the Blue Hose, going 14-for-22 with two interceptions and 167 yards. Kaleb Griffin came in relief in the second half and went six-for-13 with one interception for 43 yards. Eric Kordenbrock led VMI, going 18-for-41 with one interception.
PC totaled 285 yards of offense, after recording just 45 in the first half, with 210 coming from the air. VMI had 374 yards, of which 208 came from passing yards. The Blue Hose had 18 first downs and held the ball for 22:14 minutes. VMI posted 25 first downs and controlled the ball 37:46.
Neither team could get going on offense early in the game with both VMI and PC finishing the first two drives with punts.
VMI was the first to put points on the board when the Keydets used a 10 play drive that took them to the 10-yard line after capitalizing on a PC pass interference which give them first and goal. Tackles by Shonquille Byers, Bryan Shepherd and Xavier Boatright resulted in just eight more yards for VMI, forcing the Keydets to attempt a 19-yard field goal. Jeff Sexton sailed the ball through the uprights to give VMI the 3-0 lead with 1:46 to go in the first.
PC was forced to punt on the next two possessions, with VMI punting away on its next as well.
The Keydets went up 10-0 in the second quarter with a drive that started on the VMI 34-yard line with 3:21 on the clock. VMI chipped away at the yardage until Kordenbrock connected with Dexter Bridge on a 29-yard TD pass to give VMI the 10-0 lead after the successful PAT by Sexton. VMI ate up 2:20 on the clock off 10 plays for 66 yards.
On PC's next possession Garrick threw an interception on second and 10 with 37 seconds remaining as VMI held the ball until the end of the half, taking the 10-0 lead into the locker room.
The Blue Hose opened the second half with the ball and with Griffin at quarterback. He threw his first career interception three plays in, giving VMI the ball at its 39-yard line with 14:07 on the clock.
VMI made it to the PC 27-yard line before the PC defense held, forcing Sexton to attempt a 43-yard field goal, which he missed wide right.
The Blue Hose took over at their own 27-yard line and, with 10:39 remaining in the third, looked promising after Griffin opened it with a career-long 11-yard run. The Blue Hose advanced to the VMI 23-yard line off a 14-yard catch by Williams (Arthur) and an 18-yard rush by Byrd but VMI held the PC offense to just four more yards, forcing a field goal attempt. Aaron Mayes' 40-yard attempt sailed wide left, leaving the Blue Hose without any points, however.
VMI, from its 23-yard line with 7:28 left in the third, used a 10-play drive, which included seven rush plays and a 40-yard catch by Aaron Lewis, to go up 17-0 with 2:44 left in the third.
PC opened the fourth quarter with the ball as part of a 14-play drive that saw the Blue Hose advance 44-yards. The offense stalled with Mayes attempting another field goal, this one a 39-yard attempt, which went wide left to give VMI the ball at its 22-yard line.
The Keydets advanced to the 36-yard line before Kordenbrock turned the ball over, throwing an interception to Antarius Terrell, the fifth of his career. He ran it back three yards to give PC the ball at the VMI 47-yard line.
It didn't take long for PC to capitalize, using a 10-yard rush by Byrd to advance to the VMI 26-yard line. Griffin's next pass was a 23-yarder to McKie, who ran it in for the team's first score. A Mayes' successful PAT made it 17-7 in favor of VMI with 7:41 remaining in the game.
VMI was forced to punt on its next possession and the ball was downed at the PC one-yard line, giving the Blue Hose the ball with 3:49 to go. After a 15-yard and 29 yard catch by Anderico Bailey, the Blue Hose found themselves at the VMI 33-yard line. On a first and 10 Griffin was sacked and lost the ball. It was recovered by VMI's Weston Reber to give the Keydets the ball at the VMI 38 with 2:06 left in the game.
PC got the ball back with 46 seconds left in the fourth quarter from its own 15-yard line but could not muster a drive, ending the game with an interception as time expired.
PC returns home Saturday, Oct. 13th to take on Liberty at Bailey Memorial Stadium. Kick-off for the homecoming contest is at 2 p.m.