Mocs Football Opens SoCon Spring Action with 24-13 Win

The Chattanooga Mocs used a stout defense and timely offense to beat No. 11 Wofford 24-13 at Finley Stadium Saturday afternoon. It’s the highest-ranked win for the Mocs since the 23-21 triumph at No. Samford on Oct. 28, 2017.

The defense limited the Wofford attack to just 199 yards. Seventy-one of the 199 came on the game-opening touchdown drive. The Mocs allowed just two field goals the rest of the way. Kam Jones tied for game-high honors with 10 tackles, while Brandon Dowdell added seven stops and a fourth-quarter interception. Devonnsha Maxwell recorded two sacks and three tackles for loss up front.

The offense answered that opening score with one of its own. Drayton Arnold notched his first career touchdown pass on a fourth-and-goal. He faked a handoff and then lofted it over the defense into the welcome hands of tight end Jay Gibson.

The Mocs took the lead for good just before half. Gabe Boring’s 47-yard punt was fumbled inside the five-yard line. Kohl Henke recovered at the three in a mad scrum. Two plays later Tyrell Price cashed in for the 14-10 lead.

“That changed a lot of momentum,” Coach Rusty Wright shared. “We came out in the second half and had a great drive to start but didn’t get any points. But it was still a good drive. We get points right there, it’s going to be real hard the rest of the day.

“I was pleased on how we tried to do things for a group that’s probably practiced, truly practiced, about 10 or 12 times when it’s all said and done.”

Chattanooga closed with a strong final quarter. Gino Appleberry scored his first collegiate TD from five yards pushed it to 21-13. Another Wofford fumble on a fair catch on the ensuing kickoff ended up with the Terriers starting on their own four. The three-and-out and punt set the Mocs up with a short field at the Wofford 48. Six plays later, another premier with Skyler Wilson making his first field goal, a 26-yard effort, growing the lead to 24-13 which is where it ended.

Arnold completed 15 of 25 for 223 yards and a touchdown. Reginald Henderson caught seven for a career-best 102 yards.

Ryan Lovelace paced the Terriers ground game with 82 yards on 12 carries. Quarterback Jimmy Welrick had eight rushing yards due to three Chattanooga sacks, but he had the lone touchdown. He was limited to 51 yards in the air completing eight of 15 with an interception. John Beckley tied Jones for the tackles lead with 10.