CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. -- It was a 21-21 tie game late in the first half before Campbellsville (Ky.) University outscored the Lindsey Wilson College football team 27-9 the rest of the way for a 48-30 win on Saturday at Ron Finley Stadium.
Despite committing 16 penalties for 112 yards, Campbellsville's experience in big games came through to overcome the multiple errors, including four fumbles.
Nathan Cooper threw for 165 yards and a touchdown and Mark Terry rushed for 104 yards and two touchdowns to pace the Campbellsville offense. Receivers Demetric Ray and Gerwan Brewer caught a combined seven passes for 102 and 84 yards, respectively.
Ricky Bowling completed 9-of-20 passes for 94 yards with a touchdown and interception, while Greg Young threw for 66 yards in just 10 attempts. Victor Moulden was the leading Blue Raider receiver with six catches for 93 yards.
On just the second play from scrimmage, Campbellsville (3-1, 2-0 MSC East) used some trickery with a double pass.
Wide receiver Geoffrey James threw a deep ball to the 11-yard line to Demetric Ray before being brought down by Kevin Couch for a 64-yard gain.
Couch's stop became important as Lindsey Wilson (1-3, 0-1 MSC East) held the Tigers to just a field-goal attempt.
Campbellsville started with a false start penalty, then a short run before two incomplete passes. The Tigers continued to be too eager on the line, committing two false start penalties before the kick. With the attempt backed up, the field goal flew wide left and Lindsey Wilson dodged an early score.
Penalty marred opening drives eventually led Lindsey Wilson to a third down and 18 situation with two incomplete passes from Bowling, leading to a punt.
Once again, the punt wasn't penalty free as the Tigers were called for a block in the back, pushing the ball back to their own 39-yard line.
Tiger running back Mark Terry, however, proved a tough man to tackle for the Blue Raider defense as he routinely ran for carries of five or more yards on first down, giving Campbellsville short yardage situations to move the sticks.
On fourth and nine with nine minutes to play in the first quarter, Campbellsville starting quarterback Robert Hill passed to Brewer down to the Lindsey Wilson three-yard line on a pass that seemingly went right through the hands of the Blue Raider defender.
From there, all it took was two handoffs to Terry to put Campbellsville on the board first for a 7-0 lead with 7:52 to play.
Lindsey Wilson took over and went on their first long drive of the game.
Bowling made a play on fourth down to running back DeMichael Wallace for the offenses first new series of downs, and then a combination of long runs by Wallace and Richard Kennedy put Lindsey Wilson in the red zone for the first time in the game.
On the first play inside the 20-yard line, Bowling found Kennedy on a post route deep in the left side of the end zone for the first Blue Raider touchdown.
The ensuing extra point by Mark Corbett was blocked, however, Campbellsville was off sides - committing its ninth penalty of the game - allowing Corbett to be successful on his second attempt and tie the game at 7-7 with under a minute to play in the first quarter.
Campbellsville shot right back on its next drive as Terry opened the series with a 28-yard rush, followed by another carry for five yards. Hill then completed a pair of passes for 13 yards, allowing Brewer to carry the ball in to take a 14-7 lead with 14:01 left in the half.
The potent offensive attacks continued for both teams as Lindsey Wilson went back on the attack with a bevy of big gains. After an off sides call on the Tigers, Young kept the ball for an 18 yard scramble into Tiger territory.
After the long run, the Tigers defense committed a personal foul, moving the ball 15 yards towards the Lindsey Wilson end zone. Wallace gained two yards from the 15-yard line, setting up Kennedy for a 13-yard scamper into the end zone for the tying score.
The Blue Raiders finally shutdown the Campbellsville offense on fourth down from the Lindsey Wilson 39-yard line as Hill kept the ball and was held a yard short. With 8:59 on the clock, Lindsey Wilson finally got a shot to put up a go-ahead score.
The effort started nicely as Victor Moulden hauled in a 32-yard pass from Bowling to quickly enter Tiger territory. Moulden continued to be the go-to man on the drive, catching a screen pass for 10 yards to make it to the 30-yard line.
As the Blue Raiders made it to the seven-yard line, Kennedy, a consistent highlight maker, took the ball to the opposite side of the play, running outside for a touchdown to give Lindsey Wilson a 21-14 lead with 6:21 left in the first half.
Campbellsville made a switch at quarterback for its next drive as Cooper went under center and promptly put the Tigers into the end zone for the tie, 21-21, with 4:08 on the clock on a two-yard pass to Harold Small.
After stopping the Blue Raiders, the Tigers took over with a minute on the clock and got a 21-yard pass from Cooper to James for 21 yards, followed by a 51-yard strike from Cooper to Brewer to get to the two-yard line.
It only took Terry one carry from that close to the end zone to put the Tigers ahead with 31 seconds to play in the half.
Lindsey Wilson ran out the rest of the clock as the teams entered halftime with the Tigers up 28-21.
It didn't take long after the break for the action to heat up.
On the first play of the second half, Bowling was picked off by Trey Mayes at the Lindsey Wilson 40-yard line, which he took all the way into the end zone. The point after by David Hon was unsuccessful, making the score 34-21.
Hon had been perfect for the season on extra points and field goals coming into the game.
Things didn't get any better for the Blue Raiders on their drive. Kennedy returned the kickoff for 31 yards, but a holding penalty and personal foul pushed the ball all the way back to the 10-yard line.
After being stopped for three short gains rushing the ball, Corbett mishandled the snap on the punt in the end zone, allowing Dwight Houston to fall on the ball for the touchdown putting the Tigers in front 41-21 early in the second half.
While neither team led by more than seven points in the first half, Campbellsville quickly gave itself a 20-point cushion early in the third quarter by taking advantage of two straight Blue Raider misfires.
Lindsey Wilson responded by holding the Tigers to a three and out drive, then Moulden abruptly blocked the punt as Zach Barnes recovered it 10 yards downfield. As Barnes was nearly brought down, he lateralled to Trey Knecht for a gain of 10 yards as he was brought down at the 12-yard line.
The drive in the red zone started with a false start, and then Young was sacked for an 11-yard loss, followed by a completion to Matt Powers for a three-yard loss. The drive came to an end with no points after Young was sacked and fumbled the ball back to Campbellsville at the Tigers' 38-yard line.
With the Lindsey Wilson offense struggling in the second half, the defense stepped up and found a way to put points on the board.
Cooper was sacked on third and long by Sam Wilson for a loss of 15 yards. Then the snap on the punt soared high and out of the back of the end zone for a safety to help Lindsey Wilson climb within 18, 41-23.
Trailing 48-23 after another three-yard score from Terry, Young made a pair of exciting plays to put Lindsey Wilson back into the end zone.
The first was a 49-yard pass to Moulden down the left sideline to the Tiger 10-yard line, followed by a keeper from five yards out for the score to make it 48-30 with 7:57 to play.
The rest of the game came down to ball control as Campbellsville went strictly to a rushing game to run out the clock after sacking Bowling twice on the Blue Raiders final drive.