Jacksonville, Ala. - The Tennessee State University Tigers dropped their second straight with a 24-0 loss at No. 3 Jacksonville State in OVC play.
TSU (3-4, 0-3 OVC) posted 219 yards but racked up 14 penalties for 117 yards. The Tigers' offense could not get in gear going 2-of-12 on third down. It was the first time the Tigers had been shutout since 2005 when they suffered a 49-0 loss to Eastern Kentucky.
On defense, the Tigers pulled in two picks with Eugene Clifford and Justin Bather each posting one apiece. Michael Murphy led all defenders with eight tackles and Marquez Hall racked up seven total tackles, all solo stops.
Playing solid defense, the Tigers only trailed 7-0 with less than three minutes left to play in the first half. After holding the Gamecocks to a three-and-out, a costly fumble by TSU on the punt return gave the ball back to JSU on the Tigers' 18-yardline with 2:09 on the clock.
It would only take one play for JSU (6-0, 4-0 OVC) to score when Coty Blanchard found James Shaw for an 18-yard score in the end zone. Blanchard went 4-of-4 for 32 yards with Marques Ivory connecting 8-of-19 for 67 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. Shaw led all receivers with three receptions for 40 yards.
After James Esco hit a 27-yard field goal to give the Gamecocks a 17-0 lead at the break, Ivory found Jeff Cameron in the end zone with JSU marching down for the score on their opening drive of the second half. The touchdown capped a six-play, 64-yard drive.
The Gamecocks finished with 273 yards of total offense behind Calvin Middleton's 86 yards on the ground from 12 carries for a 7.2 average. Middleton put JSU on the board in the first with a 32-yard touchdown run. JSU tied the longest winning streak in conference play at 11 games and gives them their best start in the 1991 season. TSU also holds the longest streak in OVC play at 11 games a feat accomplished during the 1999 season.
The Gamecocks posted three sacks behind Rodney Garrott. Garrott finished with six tackles (4 solo) and one sack while Antonio Bonner finished with a team high seven tackles (5 solo).
The Tigers will return home to LP Field to face Tennessee Tech in conference play on Kids Day. Game time is slated for 6:00 p.m. on October 23rd.