Cats Come Up Short Against Mississippi State
10/25/2013 12:08 AM
Kentucky’s matchup with Mississippi State was billed as the Cats’ first winnable game since the second week of the season, but despite some positives, it followed a very similar script.
UK found themselves in a familiar position, falling behind 21-7 before a Joe Mansour field goal cut the lead to 21-10 heading into halftime. And following a first half plagued third down struggles on offense and the inability to limit the big play on defense, the Cats came out like a different team in the second half. After forcing a safety and trimming the Mississippi State lead, Kentucky marched down the field on the ensuing possession and Jojo Kemp scored from 14 yards out to cut the lead to 21-19.
Following Kemp’s touchdown, UK caught the Bulldogs off guard with an onside kick that would be overturned on a controversial offsides call. Mississippi State quarterback Dak Prescott caught a 17-yard touchdown from running back Jameon Lewis at the close of the third quarter to give the Bulldogs a 22-19 lead. A Joe Mansour field goal is all the Cats could muster in the fourth quarter and Max Smith’s fourth-down pass fell short at the Mississippi State 29 with 21 seconds remaining to end the game.
The final pass was the end of an inconsistent night for Smith, who finished 18 of 34 for 160 yards and a touchdown. Sophomore quarterback Jalen Whitlow, who was hobbled by an injury suffered in the Alabama game, completed his only pass for 5 yards and ran for 12 yards on 4 carries. Raymond Sanders and Jojo Kemp both carried the ball 15 times with Sanders picking up 86 yards and Kemp registering 63 and a touchdown. Freshman Ryan Timmons, who scored UK’s only touchdown through the air from 51 yards out in the first half, finished with 5 catches for 69 yards.
Be sure to watch KSTV Monday for a full recap.