Photo by David Chamberlain / MTSU Sidelines
In a rivalry where the games are heart-racing shootouts with incredible endings, the 2018 edition of the 100 Miles of Hate was a breath of fresh air. At least for MTSU.
The Blue Raiders broke a three-game losing streak to WKU with a 29-10 win on Friday night at Floyd Stadium.
MTSU jumped out to an early 7-0 lead with Brent Stockstill finding Ty Lee on a signature back-shoulder throw which has been a staple of the offense this season.
A WKU fourth down attempt in Blue Raider territory was snuffed out by defensive star Jovante Moffatt swinging momentum heavily to MTSU.
The Hilltoppers were chipped to death by the Blue Raiders as WKU quarterbacks Drew Eckels, backup Steven Duncan, and third-string Davis Shanley were all unable to help the Tops offense do much damage on the scoreboard.
Crews Holt went 5-for-5 in field goals made in an outstanding performance following a shaky start to the season and outscored WKU by himself. It also tied a MTSU school record for most field goals made and points scored by a kicker in a game.
Fourth time the charm
Brent Stockstill entered his final 100 Miles of Hate game with a 0-3 record against WKU, and after lots of trash talk and dogging by WKU fans on social media over this statistic, Stockstill finally got the monkey off his back.
Stockstill finished with 24-42 and 228 yards with two touchdowns in his last battle against the Hilltoppers and earned fan player of the game.
Let’s go bowling
With the win, MTSU officially became bowl eligible with its sixth win of the season. While this does not guarantee a bowl game outright, the Blue Raiders will have three games (one against winless UTEP) to gain a seventh win which would secure a postseason berth for the Blue Raiders.
Under Coach Rick Stockstill, MTSU has been bowl eligible 10 out of his 13 years including nine of the last 10.
Ty Lee continued his impressive reception streak with a tunnel screen catch in the first quarter to make it 35 consecutive games with a reception. The streak is the longest in program history, and inside the top 10 in current streaks in college football. Lee finished the game with five catches and 81 yards to go with his touchdown.
Zack Dobson had a true coming-out-party against WKU with his first career score on a jet-sweep flip from Brent Stockstill from five yards out. Dobson’s speed was an issue for Tops defenders all night with 49 yards on the ground and 19 yards through the air.
Patrick Smith put in a solid performance with 60 yards on eight receptions leading the team in catches.
After being challenged by Rick Stockstill before Old Dominion, the Blue Raider running game has shown up in style and Chaton Mobley was the main act versus WKU with 198 yards on 25 touches in his first 100+ yard rushing game of his career.
Mobley was a bull on parade in the second half as a tired Hilltopper defense was unable to contain the 235 pound back, as the Blue Raiders leaned on its potent running game to run the clock down.
The Blue Raiders head to El Paso, Texas to face the winless UTEP Miners who haven’t won a game since 2016. The game should present an easy challenge for MTSU but the Blue Raiders should be wary of any trap game. A win puts MTSU officially in the postseason with its seventh win as well as staying in the hunt for the Conference USA East title.
To contact Sports Editor David Chamberlain, email email@example.com.