The Kentucky Wildcats (5-5, 1-4) football team held serve today in their match-up with FCS opponent Charleston Southern (2-7, 0-4) with a 49-21 victory at Commonwealth Stadium. The 'Cats, once again without running back Derrick Locke and Raymond Sanders, still shredded the over-matched Buccaneers for 228 rush yards and five rushing touchdowns.
For the game particulars, follow me after the jump:
The 'Cats put together several long plays this afternoon, here's a rundown: A Donald Russell 25-yard touchdown run; a CoShik Williams 41-yard touchdown run; a Mike Hartline 53-yard touchdown pass to Chris Matthews; a Hartline 36-yard touchdown pass to Randall Cobb; a 47-yard Hartline pass to La'Rod King; a 27-yard Hartline pass to Cobb; and a 37-yard Hartline pass to Cobb.
Donald Russell, replacing the injured Raymond Sanders, who replaced the injured Derrick Locke, ran for a career-high 110 yards on only 10 carries (11.0 yards per carry). Russell also scored two touchdowns.
Little-used fourth string running back CoShik Williams came up big today for the 'Cats, running for 95 yards on 13 carries (7.3 ypc) and three touchdowns.
Randall Cobb had yet another big day: Four catches for 101 yards (25.3 yards per reception) and one touchdown.
Wide receiver Chris Matthews also put up big numbers for UK, catching four passes for 92 yards (23.0 ypr) and one touchdown.
La'Rod King (one catch for 47 yards), tight end Jordan Aumiller (two catches for 23 yards), and uber-athlete Brian Adams (no, he didn't sing but he did catch two passes for 10 yards) all helped in the Wildcat cause, although, Aumiller did fumble the ball at midfield after making a 15-yard reception (in Aumiller's defense, it was a flush, helmet to ball hit)
UK quarterback Mike Hartline had an up and down day; at one point missing on six consecutive passes, then, completing seven in a row. On the day, Hartline completed 15 of 24 passes (62.5%) for two touchdowns and one interception, which happened to come at the CSU goal line.
Morgan Newton took over the play-calling duties at the 10:58 mark of the fourth quarter, and had a nice 11-yard run to set up a Donald Russell 17-yard touchdown run. Newton was 1-4 through the air for two yards.
Wildcat defensive standouts included the ferocious Danny Trevathan who had 13 tackles and one sack on the day. Safety Winston Guy Jr. led the 'Cats in tackles on the day with 16 (it's never good, though, when the safety leads the team in tackles). Corner back Martavious Neloms, coming off an injury, produced nine tackles and one sack.
Craig McIntosh, usually a very reliable kick-off man, today kicked the ball out-of-bounds, giving the Bucs the ball at their own 40 yard line. And of course, CSU scored a touchdown off the UK miscue. Kentucky also turned the ball over on downs at midfield, leading to a Buccaneers touchdown -- The big play of the drive being a 37-yard reception by Gerald Stevenson.
UK once again lost the turnover battle, this time 2-0. That makes 18 Kentucky turnovers in the last seven games. On a positive note, the UK defense did hold the Bucs to only five of 16 on third down conversions (31.3%), but the Bucs converted two fourth downs on two tries.
As a team, the Cats ran for 228 yards on the ground, good for an outstanding 8.4 yards per carry, while the defense held CSU to 140 yards on 2.9 yards per carry. Kentucky's offense produced 502 yards of offense to only 269 yards for CSU.
CSU, riding the arms of quarterbacks Andrew Trudnowski and Malcom Dixon, completed 15-18 passes (83.3%) for 129 yards and one touchdown. Only three incompletion's? ... unacceptable.
All-Big South performer Gerald Stevenson was held in check for most of the afternoon (except for his 37-yard pass reception setting up a CSU TD) by the UK defense, gaining only nine yards on four carries and a touchdown, along with catching five passes for 68 yards (13.6 ypr).
The 'Cats now sit at 5-5 with Vanderbilt -- who took a major beat-down from the Florida Gators today -- coming to Commonwealth next week, and two weeks later, UK travels to Knoxville in an attempt to do the seemingly impossible ... send the Vols home unhappy.
Thanks for reading and Go 'Cats!