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VMI improves to 5-0 with wild 36-31 win at Wofford

vmi football 2021Seth Morgan found Jacob Herres in the end zone for a 14-yard TD pass with 35 seconds left to cap a wild 36-31 VMI win at Wofford on Saturday.

Wow, what a game. The Keydets (5-0) seemingly had the game put away after a long drive that ended with a field goal that put them up 30-24 with 1:58 to go, but a Jimmy Weirick-to-Landon Parker 75-yard TD pass put Wofford up 31-30 just 14 seconds later.

VMI took over from its own 21 on the ensuing kickoff, and Morgan, starting for an injured Reece Udinski, started the final march with a 22-yard pass to Max Brimigion.

Facing a third-and-1 at the Wofford 48, Morgan connected with Herres for 14 yards to keep the drive going.

A pass-interference penalty on a pass attempt to Herres got the ball into the red zone, and then on second down, Morgan found Herres on a play that involved a fake of a wide-receiver screen that deked the linebacker in coverage on Herres to bite, then lose his footing, leaving Herres wide open down the sideline for the catch and score.

Wofford (1-3), without a timeout, was able to get the ball to the VMI 35 on a pass from Weirick to D’mauriae VanCleave, but he was tackled with triple zeroes on the clock, sending the VMI sideline into a wild celebration.

The win leaves VMI as the lone unbeaten in the SoCon after Mercer defeated Chattanooga on Saturday.

“The kids kept believing and kept fighting,” said VMI head coach Scott Wachenheim. “I was proud of the team finding a way to win.”

Morgan, a redshirt freshman from Pittsburgh, in his first career start, threw four touchdown passes in the second half as he went 25-34 for 375 yards, which is the 10th best single passing game in VMI history.

He also rushed for 76 yards as the team totaled 451 yards of total offense, the second best tally in program history.

Herres had a career-high 15 grabs for 207 yards in a standout performance. His three touchdown receptions gives him 19 for his career – second most in program history – and only one behind career leader Mark Stock (1984-88).

The Keydets trailed 10-0 early in the first quarter but cut it to 10-7 following a 6-yard run by freshman Grant Swinehart. Behind 17-7 at the half, Morgan connected with Herres on a 21-yard pass and minutes later hit freshman Chance Knox on a 17-yard pass to put the Keydets ahead, 20-17, with one quarter to play.

Wofford scored on a 10-yard run early in the fourth quarter, but VMI pulled ahead again on a 15-yard touchdown pass to Herres and the 28-yard field goal by Jerry Rice to make the score 30-24 before the late-game back-and-forth.

The Keydets return to Foster Stadium next Saturday for a 1:30 kickoff against ETSU as VMI looks to remain undefeated on the season.

Story by Chris Graham

augusta free press
augusta free press
augusta free press

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