Kentucky defeats no. 14 ranked Mississippi State 28-7


Kentucky Wildcats running back Benny Snell Jr. (26) celebrates a touchdown during the game against Mississippi State on Saturday, Sept. 22, 2018, in Lexington, Kentucky. Photo by Jordan Prather | Staff

Kentucky returned to their home field for week four of their schedule, this time taking on no. 14 ranked Mississippi State. The Cats battled to earn a 28-7 win over the Bulldogs.

Despite the pouring rain for the entirety of the game, Kroger Field was electric for Kentucky’s SEC home opener, with 60,037 total fans in attendance.

The first quarter ended scoreless for both teams, and Kentucky’s foes seemed to be their penalties and a missed field goal.

On the Cats’ second drive, they committed unsportsmanlike conduct on third down and three on the Mississippi State 27-yard line. The call set the Cats back 15 yards for third and 18 on the 42, in which quarterback Terry Wilson was sacked for a loss of eight yards and forced the Cats to punt on fourth down.

The Bulldogs’ possession to follow lasted only four plays, and Kentucky took over on their own 38. After moving the ball down the field to MSU’s 26-yard line, Kentucky center Drake Jackson committed a holding to set the Cats back 10 yards. Two Terry Wilson rushing plays and a no-gain play put Kentucky in field goal position on fourth and two, but Miles Butler missed the 36-yarder.

MSU came out on their first drive of the second quarter and scored on a Nick Fitzgerald one-yard walk into the endzone. The extra point took the Bulldogs to a 7-0 lead over the Cats.

Kentucky responded several possessions after that. MSU punted and gave the Cats good field position, as they started their drive on the Bulldogs’ 47. Five plays later, a Wilson pass complete to Dorian Baker good for 23 yards set the Cats up for first and goal on the two yard line. Benny Snell rushed two yards into the end zone for the touchdown, and after the extra point, tied the game up 7-7 nearing the end of the half.

Kentucky’s defense came out guns blazing to start the second half and limited the Bulldogs to just eight yards in the first drive, which was big for the Cats.

In the Cats’ first possession of the second half, they went on an 11:38 long, 92-yard drive that resulted in another Snell touchdown. A Wilson pass complete to tight end C.J. Conrad good for 23 yards put the Cats on the nine yard line. Two plays later, Snell carried the pigskin into the end-zone for six, and with the Butler extra point, the Cats were leading 14-7.

At the 9:39 mark, Mississippi State started a drive on the their own 49. On second down of that drive, Josh Allen sacked Fitzgerald for a loss of six, which put the Bulldogs back at third and 14 on their 45. Fitzgerald passed the ball down the field only for Tyrell Ajian to intercept it and run it back 35 yards to MSU’s 36. Snell got the ball in his hands the following play and ran it for a touchdown with eight minutes left on the clock.

A no-score possession for Mississippi State gave Kentucky the ball with six minutes left on MSU’s 41. Five plays into the drive, Snell scores his and the team’s fourth touchdown of the game, tying the most rushing touchdowns scored in a game by a Kentucky player.

Kentucky will be back in action next weekend at home against South Carolina at 7:30 p.m.