Coming off a bye week, the Lindenwood University-Belleville Lynx (2-3, 1-2) went into Missouri Baptist (0-6, 0-4) and came out 42-21 winners, picking up their first Mid-States Football Association Mideast win. Behind strong efforts from seniors Tarean Austin and Kam Harris, the Lynx offense operated a level yet to be seen this year. The Lynx jumped out to an early 14-0 lead and never looked back, leading the entire game en route to the 21 point victory. The Lynx are now 2-0 against the second-year program Spartans.
The Lynx opened the game with a seven play, 75 yard touchdown drive that took just two and a half minutes to complete. It began with a 40 yard completion to TJ Dunks and ended with a 16 yard touchdown pass to Walter Jackson, putting the Lynx up 7-0 after a successful point after from John Kelly.
On their second drive of the game, the Lynx took over after stopping the Spartans on fourth down in their own territory. The five play drive took just one minute 37 seconds to complete, going 37 yards in that time. Harris finished off the drive with a seven yard touchdown run, in what would be the first of three touchdowns on the day.
The Spartans gained momentum in the second quarter when Austin was sacked and fumbled on the Lindenwood – Belleville 26 yard line, which was returned down to the eight. The Spartans did not waste the opportunity, scoring two plays later and cutting the deficit to just seven points.
As good teams do though, the Lynx responded later in the quarter with a seven play, 87 yard scoring drive. Much like before, this drive only took two minutes and 40 seconds, benefitting from a 22 yard completion to Dunks and a 46 yard completion to Jackson. The latter set up another seven yard touchdown catch from Harris, giving the Lynx a 21-7 lead.
In their final drive before the half, the Lynx went on a 75 yard drive, taking five plays to increase their lead to 28-7. The drive included a 36 yard completion to Zachary Klocke and a 33 yard touchdown pass to Jackson, his second of the day and sixth touchdown reception of the season.
The Spartans came out in the second half and scored on their opening drive, cutting back into the Lynx lead, but the offense could not be slowed down as the Lynx responded with another 76 yard touchdown drive, ending with a Kam Harris one yard rush, his third touchdown of the day, giving the Lynx a 35-14 lead.
In the fourth quarter, a 73 yard kickoff return from KaRa Stewart set up a short scoring drive for the Lynx, capped by a two yard touchdown run from Austin. With the three touchdowns through the air and one on the ground, Austin accounted for four touchdowns today, tying a Lindenwood – Belleville record, and gives him 13 on the season. The touchdown run made the score 42-21 where it would become final.
Playing a huge role in the win today was the defense for the Lynx, forcing and recovering one fumble and intercepting three passes on the day. Adrian Williams and Eric Sadowski each had eight total tackles. Williams forced the fumble in the fourth quarter allowing Dallas Richardson to jump on the ball. Richardson totaled seven tackles on the day, including half a sack for a two yard loss.
Antoine Crowell, Trey Parker, and Armani Tufaga each had an interception, showing dominance on both sides of the ball.
The Lynx will return home on Saturday to face 2014 National Runner-Up No. 14 Marian University. This game will serve as the homecoming game for Lindenwood – Belleville and kick-off is set for 1 p.m. at Lindenwood Stadium.
NOTABLES: Walter Jackson had eight catches for 132 yards and two touchdowns … This was Jackson's second game with one TD reception and 100+ receiving yards … Harris rushed for two TD's and caught another … The Lynx had three interceptions, two shy of their team record --- 5 vs. Olivet Nazarene (2014) … The Lynx begin a three game stretch against top-25 opponents (Oct. 17 vs. #14 Marian .. Oct. 24 vs. #22 St. Francis (Ill.) .. Oct. 31 vs. #11 Robert Morris)