The Limestone College Saints came marching in to Carl Smith Stadium on Saturday afternoon and they played the role of spoiler in the UVa-Wise Homecoming game as the Cavaliers fell 27-6.
“We played with high intensity, but I kind of feel like we could have played better on both sides of the ball,” Cavaliers sophomore AJ Felton Jr. said. “Limestone is a good school, they’ve got a good football program. They just came out and did what they have to do. “
The Saints struck first on a one-yard touchdown run by redshirt junior DJ Phillips in the first quarter. Limestone successfully recovered the onside kick on the ensuing kickoff, but on the first play of their drive Felt tracked down the pass to make his second interception of the year. The Cavaliers drove down the field after the turnover, but a 30-yard field goal attempt missed wide to the left.
Phillips would connect with junior Quay Brown for a four-yard touchdown pass, and a 49-yard field goal followed by another one-yard touchdown run by Phillips would extend the Saints lead to 24-0 at the end of the third quarter. With just over six minutes left in the game, the Cavaliers avoided the shutout when freshman Lendon Redwine found freshman Mykael Anderson in the endzone for a six-yard touchdown — marking the second touchdown of their careers. The Cavaliers attempted a two-point conversion, but the pass was intercepted in the endzone. A 42-yard field goal by Limestone would seal the win for the Saints.
“We’ve got a lot of kids making good plays and getting better, but we’re just not doing enough and we’re not doing it consistently,” Cavaliers head coach Dane Damron said. “Whether it’s Limestone or Lenoir-Rhyne, losing sucks.”
Redwine led the trio of UVa-Wise quarterbacks in the loss, as he completed 8-of-12 passes for 59 yards, one touchdown and one interception while also finishing second on the team with 22 yards rushing. Sophomore Terrence Lambert had a team-high 30 yards rushing on 10 attempts, and Anderson led the Cavaliers with 27 yards on four receptions with a touchdown.
Redwine led the Cavaliers passing attack, completing 8-of-12 pass attempts for 59 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He also finished second on the team with 22 yards rushing on four attempts. Sophomores Tanner Bernard and Garrett Cropp combined for a 10-for-17 performance for 54 yards and an interception. Sophomore Terrence Lambert led the team with 30 yards rushing on 10 attempts, while Anderson finished with a team-high 27 yards on four receptions with a touchdown.
Sophomore Austin J. Hicks recorded a game-high 15 total tackles while sophomore Micheal Rowser finished with a game-high 2.5 tackles for a loss. Juniors Rondre Knowles-Tener and Drew O’Bryan recorded both of the team’s two sacks while combining for eight tackles.
“Defensively, passing-wise we don’t allow that many passing yards, so we’re doing better with that,” Felton said. “And then the front seven line up there, they’re doing a good job holding it up tight there. So I feel like we’re just improving every week and trying to get better and better.”
The Cavaliers will return to action on Saturday for their final home game of 2019. It will be Senior Day for linebacker Buster Henderson, defensive linemen Rahdazz Henderson and Bryce Harty, defensive backs Marquis Braimer and Steven Hill, offensive lineman Tristin Sellers and kicker Daryian Basco. Felton said that heading into the final home game there is only one thought on the team’s mind.
“Win. That’s all we want to do is win,” Felton said.