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Morrison's Big Day Propels Football to Win Over Tusculum

SALISBURY, SC – Junior Bobby Morrison (Statesville, NC/W. Iredell HS) ran for a career-high 158 yards and the Catawba defense held on of the nation's top offenses 200 yards under its season average in a 14-6 win over visiting Tusculum in South Atlantic Conference football action on Saturday night at Shuford Stadium and Kirkland Field.  The win lifts the Catawba Indians to 3-1 overall and 1-1 in the SAC, while the Pioneers fall to 1-3 and 0-1.

Catawba had run for just 262 yards over its first three games, but behind Morrison the Indians ran for 230 against Tusculum to help keep the ball away from the Pioneers' high-powered offense.  Morrison ripped off a 46-yard run on the game's second play to set the tone.  The drive would be capped on a one-yard run by freshman Xavier Bond (Smiths Station, AL/Glenwood Academy) and Catawba would never trail.

Logan Cornelius (Chattanooga, TN) pulled the Pioneers within 7-3 late in the first quarter with a 28-yard field goal, but that came after the Indians had stopped Tusculum on second and third downs with just a yard to go.  The Indians struck again late in the second quarter as BJ Sherrill (Cleveland, NC/W. Rowan HS) connected with Nate Charest (Charlotte, NC/Butler HS) for a 20-yard score with 3:14 to go before the break.

Tusculum had the lone scoring chance of the third quarter, but Cornelius misfired from 25 yards midway through the period.  Lightning hit just as the fourth quarter was starting and the teams endured an hour and 37 minute delay before resuming.

The Pioneers closed the game to 14-6 with 6:07 left in the contest as Cornelius capped a 13-play, 81-yard drive with a 27-yard field goal.  Catawba, behind Morris and Bond, were able to run out most of the clock before giving the ball back to Tusculum with just 1:23 left.  Chad Endres (Wellington, FL/Wellington HS/Jacksonville) broke up the final change for the Pioneers, dislodging the ball from Pioneer receiver Xzanvion Smith (Anderson, SC) on a fourth down play that would have kept the final drive alive.

Tusculum entered the game averaging 517 yards per game and 411 a game through the air.  Catawba kept the Pioneers out of the end zone, surrendering 312 total yards and only 254 passing.  Bo Cordell (Cincinnati, OH) completed 33-of-58 passes for the 254 yards.  Wesley Powell (Eclectic, AL) led the receivers with 10 catches for 63 yards.  The Pioneers ran for just 58 yards.

Bond added 63 yards to the Catawba ground attack.  Sherrill was an efficient 8-of-10 passing for 82 yards and the one score.  Charest had five catches for 68 yards.  Jumal Rolle (Wilson, NC/Beddingfield HS) had an interception for Catawba as well as a tackle for loss.

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