Second-half comeback falls short at Georgetown

Staff Reports • Oct 2, 2017 at 3:52 PM

GEORGETOWN, Ky. – Joseph Rushing threw for 304 and two touchdowns, both to Denarius Toliver, while running for another TD and Josh Bates returned a fumble 64 yards for a score, but Daric Pugh’s 43-yard TD run in the last two minutes helped 12th-ranked Georgetown College to a 38-28 win over No. 22 Cumberland in football action Saturday here at Toyota Stadium.

The Tigers (4-0, 1-0 MSC Bluegrass) led 24-7 at the half thanks to a pair of touchdown passes from Riley Hall and a three-yard TD run from Pugh. Cumberland managed just 96 yards of total offense in the first two periods.

DeAnthony Patrick’s sack forced a fumble and Bates picked it up and raced 64 yards for a TD with 5:03 remaining in the third quarter. That seemed to ignite the Phoenix (4-2, 0-1), but the Georgetown defense stopped Cumberland on fourth down at the GC29 and the Tigers took the ensuing possession 71 yards on six plays for the TD.

Reese Ryan’s 33-yard pass to Darius Barbour preceded a 15-yard scoring run from Barbour, stretching the Georgetown advantage to 31-14 with 11:29 remaining.

Rushin hooked up with Toliver for an 81-yard TD pass on CU’s next drive, but the Tigers pinned CU deep at its own 4 after a 54-yard punt. Toliver caught a 51-yard pass to get back into Georgetown territory, but the home team stopped Rushin on a fourth down rush midway through the period.

Rushin completed a 67-yard TD pass with exactly two minutes to play, cutting the deficit to 31-28, but Georgetown recovered the onside kick and Pugh broke through the line and rumbled 43 yards with 1:44 remaining to put the game away.

Rushin finished 14-of-25 for 304 yards and two TDs as well as a one-yard rushing touchdown in the first quarter. Toliver caught five passes for 213 yards and two TDs, by far the most receiving yards of his career. Dezmon Huntley injured his ankle early in the third quarter, pushing Rushin into the extended playing time.

Huntley tossed an interception over the middle on the team’s first drive of the contest, with Kishawn Walker returning the INT 20 yards to the CU25. Two plays later Hall found a wide open Conner Ford across the middle for a two-yard TD pass and a 7-0 lead for the Tigers just over two minutes into the contest.

Hall hit Kyle Longworth for a 42-yard completion on the first play of the next Georgetown possession, the end of a double reverse pass that Shedrick Kirk should have intercepted. The ball went through Kirk’s hands and Langworth’s reception got the Tigers to the CU15. Kirk and Tyler Tate sacked Hall on third down to stop the momentum, but Jack Nguyen converted a 40-yard field goal for a 10-0 advantage for the home team.

A Georgetown mistake opened the door for Cumberland later in the period, with JJ Ogbogu fumbling a punt and Kris Parker recovering at the GC40. Huntley rushed for 17 yards and hit Kendall Johnson on a shuffle pass for 10 yards to overcome a holding penalty.

Huntley carried four straight times to the one and Rushin got the final yard (barely), getting the ball across the goal line before being met by tacklers. Pablo Dongarra Travecedo’s extra point cut the deficit to 10-7 with 3:43 left in the opening period.

The Tigers marched 77 yards on 16 plays on the ensuing possession, including a 16-yard rush by Shon Lumpkin on the first third down. Pugh gained 15 yards on the ground and Hall’s 12-yard completion to Ross Cox converted 4th-and-9.

Pugh rushed five consecutive times to end the drive, gaining 18 yards and going three yards for the TD and a 17-7 lead early in the second period.

The Cumberland defense overcame a faked punt attempt that went awry and a second interception by Huntley midway through the quarter. Another short punt by the Phoenix gave the Tigers good field position late in the period, taking over at the GC46.

Hall’s 28-yard pass down the right sideline to Cox and a pass interference call on the Phoenix put the Tigers in business at the CU8. Hall scrambled and found Bart Bell for an eight-yard TD and a 24-7 Georgetown advantage.

The home team used a timeout to get one last chance before intermission, including a 40-yard completion to Bell to the CU10, but Nguyen’s 27-yard field goal in the final seconds was wide right.

Huntley was 5-of-15 passing for 23 yards and two INTs in the first half. He rushed 11 times for 65 yards but the remainder of the Phoenix had 13 carries for eight yards.

Hall completed 10 of 19 passes for 169 yards and two touchdowns while Pugh posted 49 yards on nine attempts rushing.

Cumberland will return home for the first time in four weeks next Saturday, facing Cincinnati Christian at 1:30 p.m. at Nokes-Lasater Field.

Georgetown 38, Cumberland 28

Cumberland 7 0 7 14—28

Georgetown 10 14 0 14—38

First quarter

Georgetown—Conner Ford 22 pass from Riley Hall (Jack Nguyen kick), 12:59.

Georgetown—Nguyen 40 FG, 10:43.

Cumberland—Joseph Rushin 1 run (Pablo D. Travecedo kick), 3:43.

Second quarter

Georgetown—Daric Pugh 3 run (Nguyen kick), 12:26.

Georgetown—Bart Bell 8 pass from Hall (Nguyen kick), 1:28.

Third quarter

Cumberland—Josh Bates 64 fumble return (Travecedo kick), 5:03.

Fourth quarter

Georgetown—Darius Barbour 15 run (Nguyen kick), 11:29.

Cumberland—Denarius Toliver 81 pass from Rushin (Travecedo kick), 10:00.

Cumberland—Toliver 67 pass from Rushin (Travecedo kick), 2:00.

Georgetown—Push 43 run (Nguyen kick), 1:44.

Team statistics

Cumb Geo

First downs 19 20

—Rush 6 10

—Pass 13 7

—Penalty 0 3

Rushes-yards 43-165 41-184

Passing yards 341 235

—Comp.-Att.-Int. 20-41-2 16-33-0

Punts-avg. 5-26.2 6-46.2

Penalties-yards 5-65 4-35

Fumbles-lost 0-0 3-2

Individual statistics

RUSHING—Cumberland: Dezmon Huntley 13-72, Telvin Rucker 6-53, Joseph Rushin 13-31, Kimlee North 2-12, Kris Parker 7-10, Team 1-(-5), Matthew Alter 1-(-8). Georgetown: Daric Pugh 14-99, Darius Barbour 3-28, Shon Lumpkin 4-24, Kyle Longworth 4-24, Jordan Bond 6-21, Luke Sharrock 1-11, Isaiah Walker 2-11, Team 1-(-2), Reese Ryan 1-(-12), Riley Hall 5-(-20).

PASSING—Cumberland: Joseph Rushin 14-25-0—304, Dezmon Huntley 6-16-2—37. Georgetown: Riley Hall 11-25-0—173, Reese Ryan 5-7-0—62, Team 0-1-0—0.

RECEIVING—Cumberland: Kendall Johnson 6-51, Denarius Toliver 5-213, Marcus Bryson 4-35, Ian Hafner 2-28, Telvin Rucker 1-12, Kimlee North 1-3, Kris Parker 1-(-1). Georgetown: Kyle Longworth 3-54, Bart Bell 2-48, Ross Cox 2-40, Shawn Boykin 2-11, Jordan Bond 2-4, Darius Barbour1-33, Conner Ford 1-22, Blake Ellis 1-18, Shon Lumpkin 1-5, Daric Pugh 1-0.

MISSED FIELD GOALS—Georgetown: Jack Nguyen 27.

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