UK FOOTBALL | Blue Beats White In Spring Football Game

04/16/2018 06:57 PM

Sophomore running back A.J. Rose rushed for 134 yards and three touchdowns as the Blue (offense) beat the White (defense) 45-32 in Kentucky football team’s annual Blue-White Game Friday night at Kroger Field.

Rose, who carried 15 times for 37 yards during his redshirt freshman season in 2017, had five carries of 10 yards or more and scored three of the game’s five touchdowns.

Sophomore Quarterbacks Gunnar Hoak and Terry Wilson each spent time with the first-team offense, producing similar results. Hoak was 14-of-25 through the air for 121 yards and a touchdown, while Wilson connected on 10 of his 24 passes for 131 yards, with no touchdowns and an interception.

Redshirt freshman quarterbacks Danny Clark and Walker Wood saw time behind center in the second half. Clark hit on eight of his 13 passes for 77 yards, while Wood connected on three of his four attempts for 37 yards and a touchdown.

Junior running back Benny Snell rushed six times for 33 yards in the game, while junior running back Zach Johnson rushed for 24 yards on seven carries.

Sophomore wide receivers Lynn Bowden, Jr., caught a game-high seven passes for 42 yards, while Zy’Aire Hughes caught four passes for 56 yards and a touchdown.

On defense, junior linebacker Kash Daniel registered a game-high eight tackles and added a forced fumble. Freshman linebacker Deandre Square had six tackles in the game, while senior outside linebacker Kengera Daniel and junior defensive endCalvin Taylor each had 1.5 sacks.

The Kentucky defense controlled the contest early, forcing the offense to punt on each of its first three possessions.

On the fourth drive of the game, the offense mounted its first significant drive, earning a pair of first downs and advancing into White territory. A 34-yard rush by Rose, followed by a three-yard rushing touchdown from Rose, gave the Blue team its first points of the game.

After two more punts, the offense found itself in tough field position, at its own five yard line. The offense was able to get three first downs, moving into White territory before Wilson was picked off by senior safety Mike Edwards to end the drive at the White 34 yard line.

The offense punted on the subsequent possession, but was able to move the ball with its next set of downs. In fact, the Blue team marched 66 yards in six plays, capped by Rose’s second rushing touchdown of the game, this one from 27 yards out, with 5:36 left in the first half.

Before the end of the half, the offense took advantage of good field position and scoring on a 43-yard field goal from senior kicker Miles Butler to lead 22-17 at the break.

On the first drive of the second half, the offense covered 65 yards in 11 plays, capped by an eight-yard touchdown pass from Hoak to sophomore wide receiver Josh Ali, giving the offense a 29-18 lead.

The next drive produced almost identical results, as the Cats once again used 11 plays to cover 65 yards. This time, the drive ended with a two-yard rushing touchdown from Rose, giving the Blue team a 36-21 advantage with 2:59 left in the game.

In the fourth quarter, Wood hit Hughes with an 18-yard scoring pass, providing the final margin of victory.

The Kroger Blue-White Spring Game marks the end of spring practice for the Wildcats, who will open the 2018 regular season at home, facing Central Michigan on September 1 at Kroger Field.

KSTV Breaks down the offensive side of the ball from the spring game here:

On Monday, two players announced they would transfer.

Sophomore safety Tobias Gilliam redshirted his first season at UK and saw action in six games last season after battling a stress fracture. He registered three tackles as a Wildcat. On Twitter he said, ““First off I wanna thank the University of Kentucky for allowing me to attend the university to pursue my degree and keep playing the sport I love,” Gilliam wrote on Twitter. “I want to thank the coaching staff for guiding me and helping me grow on and off the field. I want to thank all the academic staff for always being there to guide and mentor me as well. To the fans, you all have been great and I’m happy I got to be a part of the Big Blue Nation. Last but not least to my teammates, thank y’all for taking me in and becoming family. I will never forget my memories with y’all boys!”

Gilliam had 4 tackles in Kentucky’s Blue-White game Friday night.

Redshirt sophomore tight end Jaylin Bannerman also announced he would transfer via Twitter. Also announced on Twitter today, Jaylin Bannerman will transfer from U-K as well. He never played a game for the Wildcats. Last season he switched from linebacker to tight end. He said, “To start I will like to thank Coach Stoops and his staff for giving me the opportunity to be a Wildcat and be a part of such a great program. My years here at Kentucky have been a great experience and they have molded me into a better man. I also would like to thank BBN … I’ll always bleed blue. After careful consideration and sitting down with my family I have come to the decision that I will be leaving the University of Kentucky. Thank you for the memories, the love and support you’ve shown me in my journey.”

Both players were from Ohio.

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