By Thomas Corhern, TTU Sports Information
COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Tech football team made a statement on its first drive. But Austin Peay took the wind out of the Golden Eagles, scoring on nine straight drives as the Governors took a 58-21 decision on Saturday at Tucker Stadium.
Following APSU's first drive, freshman receiver/return specialist Metrius Fleming showed the arm he flashed in high school, throwing a 58-yard pass to David Gist. On the next play, sophomore quarterback Bailey Fisher found Fleming, who worked his way into the end zone to put the Golden Eagles up 7-0 after Haidar Zaidan's PAT.
Governors quarterback JaVaughn Craig then put on a show, running for two touchdowns and passing for five as he compiled 378 yards of total offense – completing 16 of his 23 passes for 294 yards, then running for 84 yards on seven carries. DeAngelo Wilson caught seven passes for 161 yards and two scores, while Baniko Harley (two catches for 71), Kadeem Goulbourne (two catches for 18) and Geordon Pollard (one catch for nine) hauled in a touchdown each.
Austin Peay scored 41 unanswered points before the Golden Eagles scored again with 30 seconds left in the second quarter. Fisher completed a 13-yard touchdown to Mitchell McClurg to put Tech back on the scoreboard, but the Govs added a 44-yard field goal from Logan Birchfield as time expired to send the game to the intermission 44-14 in favor of APSU.
Tech added one more touchdown late in the fourth quarter as John Jones broke free for a 45-yard touchdown connection from Fisher with 3:58 remaining in the contest.
Fisher ended the game with 202 yards and three touchdown passes on 23-for-30 passing. His third touchdown pass gave Fisher his 24th passing and rushing touchdown combined this season, giving the sophomore the Tech single-season record for combined touchdowns in a season.
Gist finished the game as Tech's top rusher with eight carries for 36 yards, while Fleming ended the game with seven catches for 70 yards. Gist also led the Golden Eagle in all-purpose yards with 117 yards.
Aderick Moore led the Golden Eagle defense with 14 tackles.
The Golden Eagles (4-4, 1-4 Ohio Valley Conference) returns to action next week as they travel to Murray State for a 1 p.m. kickoff.
Photo by Thomas Corhern, TTU Sports Information