MURRAY, Ky. (9/2/13) – Murray State had an explosive start to the 2013 season as they stormed out to a first-quarter lead before the depth of Missouri wore down the Racers in the second half in a 58-14 victory.
The Tigers (1-0) were driving on their first possession, but a fumble recovery by Darrian Skinner set up the Racer offense near midfield. Maikhail Miller used his legs to rush for 23 yards and a big first down, and then hit Walter Powell over the middle for 17-yard touchdown.
MU came back and scored on back-to-back possessions, but Zach Dean blocked the second extra point to keep the deficit at 13-7.
The Racers (0-1) were able to regain the lead late in the first quarter as they put together a 14-play drive that covered 83 yards and took 4:41 off the clock. After MSU picked up a first down, the Tigers looked return an interception deep into Racers territory before a defensive holding call negated the play.
MSU took advantage and Duane Brady broke off a 17-yard run around the right side. Facing a 4th-and-2 in the red zone, the Racers decided to leave the offense on the field and Miller rushed for four yards and the first down. The Racers then went into their bag of tricks as Miller threw the ball back to Jeremy Harness, who returned the ball to Miller on the left side. Miller made a spin move to make the defender miss and scamper in for the five-yard touchdown.
The Tigers began the second quarter by James Franklin hitting Jimmie Hunt for a 21-yard touchdown to put MU ahead 20-14. MU added to the lead midway through the quarter on a Marcus Murphy four-yard touchdown run.
The second half gave the Racers an opportunity to get a lot of players some game action. Redshirt freshman Marcus Holliday carried the ball seven times for 11 yards in the fourth quarter, while also hauling in a pair of passes. Quarterback Parks Frazier was impressive in his first action as a Racer by going 6-for-6 for 24 yards.
Miller made an impression in his Racer debut as he went 16-for-32 for 145 yards and a touchdown. He also led the team with 73 yards on 11 carries. He was not done yet as he hauled in a five-yard touchdown pass.
Paul Rice led the receivers with five catches for 63 yards. Powell added four catches for 35 yards, while Nevar Griffin had four grabs for 24 yards.
The defense was led by five seniors as Corey Addison, Darian Yahyavi, Darrell Smith, Brandon Wicks and Sam Small each recorded seven tackles. Jeremy Brackett recorded the only sack for the Racers, while Travis Taylor forced a fumble that was recovered by Darrian Skinner.
The Racers return to action Sept. 7 as they welcome Campbellsville for the 2013 home opener. Kickoff is set for 6 p.m. at Stewart Stadium. MSU will honor its 22 seniors before the game for Senior Day.
Information provided by John Brush (Murray State University)
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