CLINTON, MS - The Mississippi College football team wrapped up their home schedule with a 36-16 loss to Texas Lutheran on Saturday afternoon at Robinson-Hale Stadium. Prior to the game, the Choctaws honored 20 seniors playing in the final home games of their career.
The Bulldogs (5-4, 4-3 ASC) opened the scoring in the first quarter with a 14-yard touchdown pass from Mitchell Bunger to Lewis Williams to take a 7-0 lead. Bunger finished 17-32 for 232 yards and two scores.
Allen Cain gave TLU a 13-0 lead heading into halftime with field goals of 29 and 26 yards in the second quarter. In the game, Cain went 5-5 (29, 26, 37, 53, 49) from field goal range and made all three extra points.
The Choctaws got on the scoreboard in the third quarter when senior running back Steven Knight made a one-handed catch and scored from 32 yards out to cut the lead to 13-7. Knight's TD capped off a nine-play drive that covered 82 yards.
The MC defense stood tall on the next TLU possession, forcing a punt into the end zone for a touchback. The Choctaws would give the ball right back on a fumble that set up a 22-yard touchdown pass from Bunger to Ryan Jones, and the Bulldogs took a 20-7 lead.
The ensuing kickoff by the Bulldogs was held up by the wind and recovered by TLU without touching a Choctaw. Charles Cooper made MC pay with a 10-yard rushing touchdown just three plays later to give the Bulldogs a 27-7 advantage. The Bulldogs turned four of MC's seven turnovers into scores.
Following three straight Cain field goals for TLU, the Choctaws scored their second safety of the season when the Bulldogs were tackled in the end zone by senior Jarrad Craine. The Brandon native extended his nation-leading passes defended mark with five more in the game to give him 17 on the season.
Steven Knight set an MC career record with 27 touchdowns scored in career on 21-yard scoring jaunt with 1:15 remaining. The Pearl native has 21 rushing scores and six receiving touchdowns.
Senior wide receiver Brian Richardson led MC with four catches for 52 yards, while freshman DeMarrion Buford-Hughes caught two passes for 46 yards. For Richardson, his first catch of the day gave him 100 for his career.
Craine also led the Choctaws with 10 tackles and 2.5 tackles for loss. Senior Blake Rowell tallied nine tackles and extended his ASC-leading marks in tackles for loss and fumbles forced with one TFL and two FF.
The Choctaws will end the 2011 season next Saturday when they travel to Abilene, TX to face McMurry at 2:00 p.m.