November 11, 2017
Football Eyes Playoffs After Topping Lenoir-Rhyne 24-20
SALSIBURY, N.C. -- Catawba staked its claim to be included in the NCAA II playoffs with a 24-20 victory over visiting Lenoir-Rhyne in South Atlantic Conference football action on Saturday afternoon at Shuford Stadium and Kirkland Field. The Catawba Indians up their record to 9-2 overall and finish 5-2 in the SAC. The Bears end their season at 3-7 and 2-5.
Two Kenyatta Greene touchdown runs broke third-quarter ties and lifted the Indians. Greene finished the day with 142 yards on the ground and his two scores on 19 carries. He also caught four passes for 36 yards.
Greene’s first five-yard run capped Catawba’s opening drive of the second half that covered 64 yards in 11 plays to give the Indians a 17-10 lead. The lead was short lived as Xzavion Huff took the ensuing kickoff 100 yards to bring the Bears even.
Catawba came right back with a 75-yard to retake the lead. Greene again capped the march with a five-yard run. That drive saw Sam Mobley set a new school record for receiving yards in a season. He stands at 1,046 yards which eclipses Corey Ready’s previous mark at 1,043.
Catawba’s defense held the lead after Greene’s final score. T.J. Lowe-Foston had an interception, the unit twice held the Bears on downs and gave up just a field goal in the final quarter after LR drove the Indian 19 with eight minutes to play. After the Indians held the Bears on downs with two minutes left, Eamon Smart and Greene ran for first downs as Catawba ran out the clock.
Lenoir-Rhyne jumped out to a 10-0 lead. Nelson Brown scored from a yard out on the first series of the game for a 7-0 lead and Chase Allbaugh added a 39-yard field goal. Greene’s 60-yard run set up Catawba first score, an eight-yard pass from Patrick O’Brien to Keyon West late in the first quarter. Lee Brackman connected on a 43-yard field at the 9:10 mark of the second quarter and the teams stayed tied until Greene’s run early in the third.
The Indians held Lenoir-Rhyne to 229 total yards. Brown picked up 104 of those yards on the ground. Jarrod Kellar completed 9-of-17 passes for 129 yards with T.J. Smith catching three passes for 81 yards.
Kyle Kitchens led the Catawba defense with six tackles, including one on a fourth-down stop. He added a pair of sacks to bring his season total to 13. Trey Evans and Cameron Davis added tackles for losses.
Catawba ran for 233 yards in the win as Smart followed Greene with 93 yards. O’Brien went 14-of-27 through the air for 159 yards. Mobley, West and Greene all had four receptions.
The NCAA II playoff pairings will be announced on Sunday at 5 pm online at ncaa.com.
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