By Tony Adams
The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor football jumped out to a great start last Saturday night, as senior Elijah Hudson racked up 240 all-purpose yards en route to a 31-13 Cru victory over University of the Redlands in Redlands, Cal.
After holding the Bulldogs to a lone field goal in the first quarter, the Cru mastered a 10-play, 65-yard drive culminating in a Malcolm Miller 1-yard touchdown run to take a 7-3 lead with 2:26 to play in the first quarter.
The Cru got on the board in the second quarter with a Jake Sims 4-yard run to put UMHB up 14-3, which capped a 9-play, 90-yard drive in just 2:51.
UMHB hit the scoreboard again later in the frame, as Hudson pounded the ball into the end zone on an 8-yard run to complete a drive of 54-yards in eight plays. The Cru led 21-3 with 4:17 remaining in the first half.
The Bulldogs ran out the first half clock, getting a 25-yard field goal from Kevin Grady to put the wraps on a 15-play, 68-yard drive.
Drew Owen got the Cru on the board in the third quarter coming out of the locker room with a 28-yard field goal on a drive that took 3:03.
The teams traded possessions twice before the Cru drove the ball down the field 41 yards in seven plays, which ended on a Caleb Moore 20-yard run. The drive to put the Cru up 31-6 took up 3:22, on seven plays and 41 yards.
UMHB worked their way down into Bulldog territory again late in the third quarter and bridging into the fourth quarter. On the first play of the fourth quarter, the Bulldogs recovered a fumble on their own 1-yard line to shut down the Cru drive.
It didn’t take long for Redlands to strike. In fact, just one play, as Mitch Samson hit Taylor Irwin for a 99-yard touchdown. The score brought the Bulldogs back to within 18 points at 31-13.
Neither team did additional damage on the scoreboard, as both teams traded a pair of interceptions each. UMHB worked the ball down to the Redlands’ 5-yard line, but turned the ball over on downs with :09 remaining.
Sims went 18-of-26 for 209 yards passing with two interceptions in his first start for the Cru. Hudson, named the American Southwest Conference Offensive Player of the Week for his performance, carried the ball 32 times for 189 yards and one touchdown. Moore gained 56 yards on nine carries and Miller gained 51 yards on nine carries. Hudson was the reception yardage leader with 60 yards on three catches. Marcus Wimby had four catches for 56 yards and 172 all-purpose yards on the night.
Samson was 19-of-35 passing for 273 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions. Taylor Irwin was the chief benefactor of Samson’s passing with nine receptions, 165 yards and one touchdown.
The Cru has won 35 consecutive regular season games.