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Blue Raiders fall at No. 15/16 Mississippi State

Kilgore moves to seventh all-time in passing yardage at MT

October 20, 2012 · @MTAthletics

STARKVILLE, Miss. - Middle Tennessee held its own for a half, but the No. 15/16 Mississippi State Bulldogs used 35 unanswered points to take a 45-3 victory over the Blue Raiders at Davis Wade Stadium Saturday evening.

The Blue Raiders (4-3) limited MSU (7-0) to just 10 points in the first half. However, a pair of MT miscues in the second half catapulted Mississippi State to a 21 point third quarter. The Bulldogs amassed 446 offensive yards, holding MT to 306.

Quarterback Logan Kilgore threw 16 completions out of 25 attempts for 159 yards. The redshirt junior moved to seventh all-time at MT, passing Marvin Collier's (1985-88) mark of 4,234 yards.

Senior wide receiver Anthony Amos grabbed six catches for 93 yards to lead the Blue Raider receiving corps. Freshman Jordan Parker totaled 66 yards on 13 carries, while Reggie Whatley added six rushes for 48 yards.

Jajuan Harley led the MT defense with eight tackles. Kenneth Gilstrap and Chris Sharpe added four solo stops on Saturday. 

To open the game, Mississippi State used a long and methodical possession to take a 7-0 lead. The Maroon and White capped a 7:08 drive with a Tyler Russell four yard touchdown pass to Chris Smith. MSU added a 32-yard field goal to take a 10-0 lead into the second quarter.

MT continued to hold the MSU offense at bay and finally broke the shutout with five minutes left in the first half. Carlos Lopez connected on a 32-yard field goal to make it a 10-3 contest.

A MSU drive with two minutes left in the half was stalled when Shubert Bastien forced a fumble and Kendall Dangerfield recovered the ball. Bastien earned his fourth force in his career, while Dangerfield grabbed his second fumble recovery. Bastien registered three tackles-for-loss against the Bulldogs. 

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The Blue Raiders had 24 plays for 159 yards, while Mississippi State gained 211 offensive yards on 39 plays. At the half, Kilgore was 7-of-12 for 96 yards. Parker led MT with 43 yards on seven carries.

Middle Tennessee ended up empty handed on their opening second half drive. On MSU's first third quarter drive, LaDarius Perkins broke through for 64 yards to give the Bulldogs a 17-3 edge with 7:30 left.

The third quarter proved to be daunting for MT. A Kilgore interception set up a prime offensive opportunity for MSU. Russell threw an 11 touchdown to Smith, giving the Bulldogs a 24-3 lead.

Another Blue Raider miscue late in the third allowed MSU a prime opportunity. Russell threw a 23-yard zinger to Robert Johnson to give the Bulldogs a 31-3 lead. Mississippi State added two more touchdowns as the Bulldogs preserved their best start since 1999.

Middle Tennessee returns home to Floyd Stadium next Saturday, Oct. 27 against North Texas. Kickoff is slated for 2:30pm.

1st Quarter

Mississippi State used a seven minute long drive to march down 74 yards and take an early 7-0 lead. Quarterback Tyler Russell threw a four yard touchdown to Chris Smith to give the Bulldogs a lead. Mississippi State used another long drive, but the Blue Raider defense held strong and prevented MSU from scoring a touchdown. Devon Bell connected on a 32-yard field goal to give MSU a 10-0 lead at the end of the first quarter. At the end of the first quarter, the Blue Raiders had just four offensive plays, as MSU racked up 128 yards of total offense.

2nd Quarter

Middle Tennessee started to move the chains, but a pair of penalties halted the Blue Raiders' progress. Mississippi State once again drove down the field, but Devon Bell missed a 35-yard field goal at the 10:18 mark. With five minutes left in the first half, used a 65 play drive capped off with a 32-yard Carlos Lopez field goal to break up the shutout. Mississippi State's drive with less than two minutes remaining in the half was halted when Shubert Bastien forced a fumble. Kendall Dangerfield recovered to give MT new life.

3rd Quarter

Middle Tennessee's first offensive possession was a strong five minute drive, but the Blue Raiders weren't able to score any points. The Bulldogs took advantage as LaDarius Perkins fan 64 yards to paydirt as MSU took a 17-3 lead with 7:30 left in the third quarter. Logan Kilgore was picketed midway through the third quarter to give MSU prime field position. Tyler Russell connected to Chris Smith again with an 11 yard touchdown pass to give the Bulldogs a 24-3 advantage. MT again turned the ball over on their next possession in MSU territory. Russell threw a 23-yard touchdown to Robert Johnson, putting MSU up 31-3. The Bulldogs outscored MT, 21-0 in the first half.

4th Quarter

Mississippi State added another touchdown as Dak Prescott capped a four play drive, putting the Bulldogs up by 35. MSU used another strong offensive drive as the Bulldogs' Derrick Milton ran in a six yard touchdown to make it a 45-3 contest with nine minutes remaining. The Blue Raiders had a late scoring opportunity, but were unable to score as time expired.

Game Notes

CAPTAINS: Today's game captains were DE Dearco Nolan, WR Reggie Whatley, and WR Anthony Amos.

KILGORE PASSES COLLIER: With 159 passing yards tonight against MSU, Logan Kilgore surpassed Marvin Collier (1985-88) for seventh place on the all-time list. Collier had 4,234 yards and Kilgore now has 4,352 yards. The junior now has his sight set on sixth place Teddy Morris (4,799).

QUICK HITTERS: Middle Tennessee wore blue pants and white jersey's for second time this season (Memphis) ... QB Logan Kilgore started his 20th career game today which ranks as the most on the team ... DE Omar McLendon played in his team-best 43rd game today ... LB Justin Jones made his first start of the season and the ninth of his career ... PK Carlos Lopez connected on his 9th field goal of the season in the second quarter and is now 9-for-10 on season ... Shubert Bastien forced the fourth fumble of his career in the second quarter ... Kendall Dangerfield recovered his first fumble of the season and second of his career in second quarter ... TE Jacob Corbaley had a career-high 3 catches...Middle Tennessee was held without a touchdown for the first time since playing Tennessee on Nov. 5, 2011 ... MT has not scored a touchdown against an SEC opponent since playing Mississippi State on Oct. 25, 2008.

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