Samford’s Michael Hiers and Chandler Smith played a little pitch and catch on Saturday night in Cookeville, Tennesssee. When they were done, the Bulldogs got back on the bus and headed home with a 33-28 victory over Tennessee Tech in Samford’s final non-conference game.

Hiers and Smith connected on three touchdown passes. None were more dramatic or more important than the final one, which came from 26 yards out with 25 seconds left on the clock. It culminated a game-winning drive that began after Tennessee Tech quarterback Jeremiah Oatsvall scored on an 18-yard run to give the Eagles a 28-27 lead with 2:43 remaining. Samford had three third-down plays on the drive, including the touchdown on 3rd-and-9.

“Like we did week one, we kept playing. When you do that, good things happen to you," Samford head coach Chris Hatcher said. "We made plays down the stretch when we needed to. When you go on the road and you beat a team like Tennessee Tech, it feels good." 

Hiers finished 29-of-47 for 327 yards with four touchdowns. Smith had five catches for 56 yards with touchdown catches of 9, 11 and 26 yards. Ty King had five catches for 97 yards and Judd Crockett had five catches for 70 yards. Peyton Ringer had a 39-yard touchdown catch. The running game produced 209 yards with Jay Stanton (20 carries for 98 yards) and Jaylan Thomas (13 carries for 96 yards) leading the way.

Nathan East led the defense with seven tackles, one tackle for loss and an interception.

TUSKEGEE 13, WEST ALABAMA 10: A 29-yard field goal by Arnes Huskic provided the winning points with 5:38 left and Zelly Aldridge’s interception sealed the first win for the Golden Tigers.

“We just kept the faith," said Tuskegee head coach Reginald Ruffin in a release by Tuskegee media relations. "I made sure to communicate with our players that we had the ability to compete with anyone once we fixed some of our mental mistakes, and that's what happened today for us, and we got the win."

Tuskegee quarterback Bryson Williams was 19-of-28 for 152 yards with a touchdown pass to Corey Petty in the second quarter. Huskic provided the other Tuskegee points with a 42-yard field in the first half. The Golden Tigers held the football for 41:39.

West Alabama struggled to get going against a stout Tuskegee defense. Quarterback Tucker Melton and John Hilbert connected on a 16-yard touchdown pass in the first half. Gabriel Dunkle also added a 26-yard field goal in the first half.

HUNTINGDON 47, GUILFORD 7: Huntington fell behind 16 seconds into the game on a 75-yard touchdown pass. The rest of the day belonged to the Hawks, even though it wasn’t always pretty.

"We are happy to get a win, for sure, but I hope we learned from this today,"  Huntingdon head coach Mike Turk said in a media relations press release. "We were very sloppy on offense, turnovers and penalties, not playing well.  We were able to overcome most of it, but can't afford to dig ourselves a hole like that. I am proud of the way our defense controlled the game, though, they bailed us out several times.  We have a lot to work on, for sure."

Huntingdon linebacker Casey Peppers had a team-high nine tackles and also collected four of the team’s nine sacks. Guilford had 160 yards in offense and only nine first downs.

Huntingdon’s offense had 573 total yards but also turned the ball over six times with four fumbles. Running back Kahari McReynolds carried the ball 20 times for 176 yards with a touchdown.

GEORGETOWN (KY.) 23, FAULKNER 13: The Eagles fell into a 16-0 hole after one half in the Mid-South Conference opener. They played better in the second half but fell short.

Samaj Washington had 10 tackles, two tackles for loss and a pass breakup for the Eagles. Jerrell Williamson had nine tackles and two assists. On offense, Satyler Wilson had three catches for 102 yards.

AUSTIN PEAY 28, ALABAMA A&M 3: The Bulldogs played well defensively, for the most part, but couldn’t muster enough offense to stay close. The Governors had four sacks, two interceptions and a fumble returned 60 yards for a score by Antoine Williams. Kwame Sutton forced the fumble on a sack.

Bulldogs quarterback Xavier Lankford was 15-of-23 for 187 yards with an interception. Running back Gary Quarles had 83 yards on 23 carries and All-American receiver Abdul-Fatai Ibrahim, who missed the first two games with an injury, had five catches for 74 yards.

TULSA 54, JACKSONVILLE STATE 17: Stepping up to play a FBS team didn’t go well for the Gamecocks.  Tulsa rolled up 621 yards in offense and led, 40-3, at halftime.

“Tulsa’s a good team and we weren’t close to them judging by the way we played tonight,” said Jacksonville State head coach Rich Rodriquez. “We have a lot of work to do.”

The Gamecocks also suffered a key injury when quarterback Zion Webb went down with a leg injury in the fourth quarter. He needed assistance to leave the field. Webb had his FCS leading seventh rushing touchdown of the season in the third quarter.

Aaron McLaughlin got the start at quarterback for the Gamecocks, his first college start. He was 3-of-6 for 47 yards with an interception and was sacked twice. Freshman Te’Sean Smoot saw his first college action, going 1-for-2 passing for eight yards and carrying the ball five times for 22 yards, with a 16-yard touchdown run.

VALDOSTA 55, MILES COLLEGE 7: The Golden Bears were overmatched in the lopsided loss to the Blazers. Valdosta State outgained Miles College, 700-184, and outscored the Golden Bears, 35-0, in the second half.

Valdosta State quarterback Ivory Durham threw for 359 yards and six touchdowns and rushed for 113 yards.

CHATTANOOGA 41, UNA 14: The Lions fell into a 20-point hole, had two punts blocked, gave up nearly 500 yards in offense and rushed for just 60 yards.

UNA quarterback Noah Walters was 18-of-27 for 250 yards with two touchdowns. Wide receiver Tekairee Kenebrew had three catches for 107 yards with a touchdown.

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