Football Eagles take positives from setback at No. 20 Liberty

Sep 11, 2017

Credit MSU Athletics

If Morehead State and Liberty had just counted the second half Saturday night, then the Eagles would have come away with only a six-point deficit. Unfortunately, the Flames built a 45-10 halftime lead as the 20th-ranked FCS team upended MSU 58-17 at Williams Stadium.

Morehead State slipped to 1-1 with a matchup at Austin Peay on the horizon next Saturday at 7 p.m. ET.

"I was extremely proud of our team for how we played," said head coach Rob Tenyer. "I felt like we played hard all the way to the end, and I know that might sound cliched, but the bottom line is we understand how to play now, and we are playing with great effort on both sides of the ball. We still have some things we need to clean up, and that is mostly technical things and communication."

Liberty built a 24-0 lead in the first quarter before MSU freshman kicker Andrew Foster opened the second frame by crushing a 53-yard field goal through the uprights. His boot went down as the second longest in program history, just one behind Charlie Stepp's 54-yard blast against Wichita State in 1986.

Freshman punter Bradley Boone also had another solid effort, booming seven punts for a 41.9-yard average, including a 56-yarder.

"I am pretty excited for our special teams. That's a freshman kicker out there making a huge field goal, and Boone continues to be effective," said Tenyer. "We do need to clean up some things in the return and coverage areas. We were a little indecisive on returns, and that led us to some poor field position. Also our coverages gave them good field position."

Junior quarterback Lawson Page finished 18-of-31 for 187 yards with a touchdown and an interception.

"I believe we will win a lot of games with that guy (Page) at quarterback," Tenyer added. "He got beat up pretty good tonight, but I like the way he kept his composure and made some nice plays."

With the Flames ahead 38-3, Page connected with senior tight end Jake Sutherland on a 11-yard touchdown with 1:43 remaining before halftime.

The Eagles also got a rushing touchdown from nine yards out by freshman running back Logan Holbrook at the 9:02 mark in the third quarter. Holbrook concluded with a team-best 44 yards on 13 totes.

Sophomore linebacker Jerome Brooks put together a commendable effort with eight total stops and 2.5 behind the line of scrimmage while also scooping up a fumble. Junior cornerback Chauncey Johns picked off a pass in the end zone.

Liberty signal caller Steven Calvert threw five touchdowns and had 281 yards. Wideout B.J. Farrow hauled in six passes for 177 yards and three scores - from 76, 45 and 25 yards.