JEFFERSON CITY -- Carson-Newman wide receiver Reggie Hubbard returned the opening kickoff 94 yards for a touchdown and the Eagles used a strong second half to defeat Newberry, 49-19 in front of 4,179 fans at Burke-Tarr Stadium on Saturday.
Hubbard fielded the kickoff and raced through the middle of the field for the Eagles' first score just 14 seconds into the game. Newberry's Ryan Lukshis capped a seven-play, 42-yard drive with a 34-yard field goal to cut C-N's lead to 7-3. After the Eagles went three-and-out, Newberry produced a 10-play, 65-yard drive as Alex Haynes scored from two yards out to put the Indians in the lead at 10-7.
In the second quarter, Newberry got the ball back after Indian linebacker Mike Grase sacked Alex Rouse for a seven-yard loss. Lukshis made his second field goal of the afternoon, a 33-yarder for a 13-7 Newberry advantage.
From there, quarterback Alex Good directed the Eagle offense to another score when Ricky Harris rushed up the middle for a 23-yard TD and a one-point Eagle lead at 14-13.
Anthony Toribio sacked Newberry QB Brandon Gantt for a loss of nine yards to give C-N the ball back with 1:56 to play. After Good rushed for 32 yards to the Newberry 49-yard line, he connected with Hubbard for a 49-yard TD pass for a 21-13 lead.
Newberry struck quickly on a hook-and-ladder trick play which Haynes completed to the Eagle 12-yard line. From there, Gantt found Corey Seawell for a TD reception, but failed to complete the two-point conversion as Carson-Newman held a slim 21-19 lead at halftime.
The Eagles received a big break early in the third quarter. After Newberry stopped the Eagles on their first possession of the second half, punter Chris Jones kicked a 51-yarder that went out of bounds at the one-yard line. On the next play, Eric Rice forced a Gantt fumble that was recovered by Denares Waites at the one. Good snuck in from a yard out to give the Eagles a 28-19 lead.
Two possessions later, the Eagles mounted a 10-play, 80-yard drive. Good completed passes of 16 and 31 yards to Otis Miller during the drive. After Tony Richardson rushed for nine yards to the Newberry two-yard line, Buck Wakefield added his first score of the game for a 35-19 Carson-Newman lead.
Good then led the Eagles on a seven-play, 61 yard drive. On the first play of the fourth quarter, Good fired a 30-yard pass to James Banks to the Newberry six-yard line. Good capped the drive with a run to the left corner of the end zone to increase C-N's lead to 42-19. Ricky Harris' two-yard rush capped a 13-play, 71-yard drive to make the final score 49-19.
Good completed seven of 12 passes for 160 yards and a touchdown while Hubbard had four catches for 93 yards and a score. Combined with Hubbard's kickoff returns of 132 yards, the sophomore from Chattanooga had 225 all purpose yards. Wakefield led the Eagle rushing attack with 12 carries for 81 yards and one touchdown. Waites led the Eagle D with seven tackles and a fumble recovery while linebackers Brian Brown and Rice had six tackles apiece.
The Eagles continue their SAC schedule on October 6 at Mars Hill. Kickoff is set for 1:30 p.m.
TUSCULUM UPSETS WINGATE, 31-28
The Tusculum Pioneers upset 18th-ranked Wingate, 31-28, in Greeneville Saturday. The win was the second in a row for Tusculum (2-3), who kept pace with Carson-Newman by winning their South Atlantic Conference opener.
MARYVILLE LOSES FIRST GAME OF SEASON AGAINST NORTH CAROLINA WESLEYAN
The deadly combination of 503 yards of total offense by North Carolina Wesleyan and Maryville College’s three key turnovers provided the Battling Bishops with numerous opportunities to defeat the Scots 51-20 in a USA South match-up in Rocky Mount, North Carolina.
NC Wesleyan took the opening drive 78 yards on 12 plays. The end of the 3:48 drive saw quarterback Cedric Townsend dash nine yards for the score. The point after gave the Bishop’s a 7-0 advantage.
The following kick-off was fumbled by Maryville and NCW had the ball on the Scots’ 25 yard line. The second play on the drive resulted in another score when Townsend hit Webb from 25 yards out. The conversion allowed NCW to have a 14-0 lead in the first four minutes of the game.
A Maryville punt by Andy Ottolini at the end of the first quarter, resulted in a 76 yard return by Devon Collins. The Bishops had the ball on the MC six yard line at the end of the first quarter.
One play into the second stanza, Townsend hit Bush for the six yard score. Vaughn recorded the PAT and NC Wesleyan has a three touchdown advantage.
The USA South preseason favorites used another long, sustained drive to pad their lead. With 6:12 remaining before the half, Townsend finished a 12 play, 66 yard drive with a seven yard touchdown jaunt. The point after put the score at 28-0.
Maryville’s next possession was their most consistent of the first half. A Rommel Hightower 33 yard kick-off return gave MC great field position. Ten plays and 43 yards later, MC’s Lucas Wall hit Ryan Gaines for a four yard passing touchdown. Brad Daniell missed the extra point and the score was 28-6 with 4:44 remaining in the half.
The Bishops did not rest on their advantage. They answered MC’s score with a five play, 47 yard scoring drive that featured three key pass receptions that culminated when Townsend hit Parsons in the end-zone from four yards out. With the extra point, North Carolina Wesleyan went to the locker room with a 36-6 lead.
NCW scored on their first drive of the second half. They marched 56 yards, but settled for a 41 yard field goal from Vaughn. With 7:33 left in the third quarter, the Bishops possessed a 38-6 lead.
The Bishops extended their lead in the fourth quarter when Townsend finished off a 70 yard drive with a one yard dive at the beginning of the fourth quarter. The eight play drive gave NCW a 45-6 lead.
NC Wesleyan used a 78 yard rush from Haywood to produce their final score. Haywood finished the 90 yard, two play drive with a six yard touchdown dash. The PAT was no good and MC was down 51-6.
The Scots attempted a late rally when backup quarterback Gary Hughes out ran the Bishop defense 60 yards to pay-dirt. Daniell’s kick made the score 51-13.
MC’s defense shut down NCW on their next drive and the Scots used a three yard touchdown scamper from Alcoa’s Darrell Tate to finish a six play touchdown drive. Daniell’s PAT provided the final score of the game. The Scots (4-1, 1-1 USA South) would lose their first game of the season 51-20.
NCW (3-2, 2-0 USA South) was paced by Townsend’s 67 yards rushing and 218 yards passing. Haywood and Bush had running efforts of 120 and 101 yards respectively.
Maryville’s Lucas Wall passed for 124 yards and ran for 56 yards. Gary Hughes led the Scots with 64 yards on the ground.
The Scots will return home next Saturday when they host Ferrum College on Honaker Field. Kick-off is slated for 1:30 p.m.