Western Carolina ends 10-game losing streak with 20-17 win
CULLOWHEE, N.C. (AP) — Will Jones threw a touchdown pass and ran for a score, Richard McCollum kicked two field goals and Western Carolina snapped a 10-game losing streak with a 20-17 win over Division II-member North Greenville on Saturday.
Trailing 17-13 with 5:31 to play, Jones faced fourth-and-8 on the North Greenville 14 when he hit Connell Young on an 8-yard pass for a first down. Jones hit Clayton Bardall on the game-winning 7-yard pass on the next play, ending a losing streak that dates to last season.
McCollum’s 25-yard field goal capped Western Carolina’s opening drive but his 41-yard attempt in the second half was blocked by Rodney Evans.
Harold Hilton’s 72-yard punt return for a score put the Crusaders (1-1) up 7-3 and Western Carolina (1-2) closed to 7-6 on McCollum’s 33-yard field goal just before halftime.
Matt Gravely’s 26-yard field goal gave the Crusaders a 10-6 lead before Jones scored on a 6-yard run. The Gulf Coast Conference Crusaders, who have beaten four Division I FCS teams all-time, replied with a 72-yard TD pass from London Johnson to Kyle Belack.
It was the first-ever gridiron meeting between the programs and the game’s start was delayed nearly three hours by lightning.