Football Falls in Home Finale to Tusculum


SALISBURY, N.C. -- Tusculum rode a pair of late first-half touchdowns to a 38-28 win over host Catawba in South Atlantic Conference football action on Saturday afternoon at Shuford Stadium and Kirkland Field.  The Pioneers improve to 3-7 overall and 2-4 in the SAC, while the Catawba Indians fall to 4-6 and 4-2.

Catawba had taken a 14-7 lead with just 1:26 to go in the half after David Burgess (Morganton, N.C./Freedom) punched in on a seven-yard run.  That is when Tusculum grabbed the momentum.  Jay Boyd returned the ensuing kickoff 95 yards to tie the score and an after a quick three-and-out by Catawba, the Pioneers struck again with 21 ticks on the clock.  Luke Lancaster connected with Evan Altizer with a 33-yard pass that put Tusculum on top to stay.

The Indians closed within 24-21 midway through the third quarter on Keyon West’s (N. Augusta, S.C./N. Augusta) second touchdown grab of the day.  The second, from Joseph Dress (Moncks Corner, S.C./Berkeley), covered 40 yards.

The Pioneers stretch their lead early in the fourth quarter.  Altizer caught two more scoring passes from Lancaster to push the TC edge to 38-21 with 11:32 left.  The first score was a 21-yard pass with the second going for 19. 

Burgess caught a 28-yard pass from Reid Carlton (Lecanto, Fla./Trinity Catholic) with 5:04 to go that pulled the Indians within 38-28.  The Indians failed to recover an onside kick attempt, but did get the ball back with 3:50 remaining.  After an initial first down, Catawba turned the ball over on downs and the Pioneers ran out the clock.

Carlton threw a pair touchdown pass, completing 14-of-35 passes for 175 yards.  West had five catches for 76 yards.  Burgess ran for 50 yards and had three catches for another 32.  He scored a pair of touchdowns.

Lancaster went 25-for-45 in the air for Tusculum for 348 yards and three touchdowns.  Altizer had seven catches for 113 yards and Rodnell Cruell made seven grabs for 91 yards.  Tony Belle ran for 83 yards.

Catawba will close its season next Saturday, traveling to Lenoir-Rhyne for a 2 pm kickoff.

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