SATURDAY, OCTOBER 19, 2002
Football Drops One To Morehead State, 48-14
Oct. 19, 2002
MOREHEAD, KY - Morehead State moved one step closer to capturing its first Pioneer Football League Southern Division title as the Eagle football team toppled visiting Jacksonville, 48-14, in a Homecoming game on Saturday afternoon at Jayne Stadium. The third-ranked Eagles raised their divisional mark to 2-0 with one game remaining, while improving to 7-1 overall.
Last year's Southern Division champion Jacksonville fell to 1-5 and 0-3 with the loss, by surrendering its most points in 36 games, dating back to a 62-44 loss to Wagner on Nov. 14,1998. The MSU victory evened the all-time series at 1-1, redeeming its loss in Jacksonville last year, 39-27.
Junior quarterback David Caudill led the Eagle attack with 98 rushing yards on 13 carries and 192 yards on a 7-for-18 passing effort. Caudill accounted for five scores, including four through the air and one on the ground.
The Eagles began the game with 13 straight rushing plays, the first 11 of which came on the opening 68-yard drive. Senior fullback David White punched the ball over the goal line on a two-yard run to give the hosts the early 7-0 lead.
MSU added to its lead after Caudill hooked up with senior halfback B.J. Maselli on a 33-yard pass play with 4:39 left in the opening quarter. Jacksonville took the next drive 70 yards on 11 plays to close the score to 14-7, when Dolphin quarterback Mike Sturgill scored on a one-yard run.
In the second quarter, Caudill connected with a wide-open junior wide receiver Matt Loy on a 75-yard touchdown pass with 6:06 before the half. However, the Eagles missed the extra point to hold at a 20-7 lead.
On the next series, JU took the ball down to the Eagles' 19, but a 36-yard field goal attempt was wide right. However, MSU turned the ball back over to the visitors four plays later. The Eagles' long snapper sailed the ball over the head of MSU punter, senior Bill Ballard, and Ballard was unable to get to the ball before Travis Lewis fell on it in the end zone to close the gap to 20-14. That score held into halftime.
However, that was as close as the Dolphins would get. Morehead State turned up the defensive pressure in the second half as the Eagles held Jacksonville to 94 total yards in the second half, including none on the ground. The weather also factored into the mix as the playing conditions worsened due to showers in the final two quarters.
Caudill and Maselli connected on another touchdown pass, as Maselli took a short pass and turned it into a 48-yard scoring play. Sophomore halfback Eli Parkes caught a Caudill pass to tally the two-point conversion and extend the score to 28-14.
Parkes and Caudill connected on another scoring play that covered 16 yards early in the fourth quarter. A muffled Dolphin punt gave the Eagles the ball on the Jacksonville 29-yard line and seven plays later, Caudill notched his fifth touchdown of the day on a four-yard run.
The Eagles sealed the victory with 2:08 to play as defensive back Matt Keeney for the second time this year returned an interception for a touchdown. The redshirt freshman stepped in front of a Dolphin receiver on a screen pass and scooted 50 yards downfield for the score.
Overall, MSU finished with 456 yards of total offense, including 296 on the ground. White and senior running back Mark Stephens contributed to the rushing effort with 63 and 62 yards, apiece. Maselli was the day's leading receiver with 81 yards on two catches.
Sturgill finished the day 19-for-32 for 142 yards. Chad Davis did most of the damage for the Dolphin offense as he led the attack in both rushing and receiving with a total of 88 yards, including 11 rushes for 45 yards and six receptions for 43 yards.
Jacksonville continues on its four-game road swing with Charleston Southern next Saturday, while the Eagles will look to secure the divisional title and the right to host the conference championship game when they travel to Clarksville, Tenn., for a 2 p.m., ET game next Saturday against Austin Peay.