Batie Shines, but Lions Fall in Home Opener

Batie Shines, but Lions Fall in Home Opener
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RELEASE FROM MISSOURI SOUTHERN ATHLETICS:

Joplin, Mo. — Caleb Batie ran for 151 yards on 19 carries, but 28 third-quarter points from Lindenwood doomed Southern and MSSU fell 51-13 in front of 5,237 fans at its home opener at Fred G. Hughes Stadium.

Southern (0-2, 0-2 MIAA) was led by Batie’s performance out of the backfield. He ran for 151 yards on 19 carries with zero negative yardage, averaging 7.9 yards per carry, including a long of 53 yards. Dalton James had 18 carries for 87 yards on the night.

Sean Kelly went 11-of-24 and ran for a touchdown, while Cole Dunbar caught four passes on the night. Arrion Howard had a catch for 12 yards. Paul Wolff went 2-for-2 on field goals from 35 and 37 yards, respectively.

Defensively, the Lions were led by Deshon Cowling with 12 tackles, including a tackle for a loss and a pass break up. Justin Legier and Akel Beard had 11 tackles each, while Richard Jordan, Jr. and Chauncey McCaulie combined for a sack. John Ejizu had three pass break ups.

Eric Henneman had eight catches for 74 yards and four touchdowns for Lindenwood (1-1, 1-1 MIAA). Cade Brister went 20-for-33 for 212 yards and three touchdowns.

Lindenwood scored the game’s first 20 points, leading 20-0 after a 12-yard touchdown pass from Max Meylor to Henneman with 13:38 left in the second quarter.

Southern, however, scored 13 unanswered points in the second quarter to cut the lead to 20-13. After a 53-yard run from Batie, Kelly capped off a four-play, 60-yard drive to get Southern on the board with a one-yard dive into the endzone.

A 15-play drive was capped with Wolff’s first field goal, this one from 35 with 4:44 left in the second, while his second of the quarter with 1:18 left from 37-yards out made the score 20-13 at halftime.

Lindenwood went scoreless for the first seven minutes of the third quarter, but reeled off 28 points in the final 6:40 to put the game away.

Southern will be back in action next week as the Lions travel to Northwest Missouri to take on the Bearcats. Kickoff from Bearcat Stadium/Tjeerdsma Field is slated for 1:30 pm.