EIU Wins Third Straight OVC Game

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 COOKEVILLE, Tenn. (EIUPanthers.com) – Eastern Illinois football won its third straight Ohio Valley Conference game Saturday afternoon with a 41-10 win at Tennessee Tech.  

EIU improved to 4-5 overall, 4-1 in the OVC.   The Panthers will host Murray State next Saturday at 12 p.m. at O'Brien Field.   TTU fell to 3-6 on the year, 2-4 in the OVC.

Eastern Illinois was effective driving down the field on the opening drive with Jalen Whitlow hitting Joe Powell on a fourth and goal from the 2-yard line to open the game.  
Whitlow was 14-of-17 in the opening half for 164 yards.   He finished the game 19-of-24 for 297 yards with four touchdown passes.  Whitlow had one interception ending his streak of consecutive passes without an interception at 163 passes.  That breaks the previous school record of 157 set last year by Jimmy Garoppolo.   The EIU school record is 218 by two quarterbacks in 2007.

Tennessee Tech cut the lead to 7-3 with 1:44 to go in the first quarter taking advantage of an EIU turnover.   Tech settled for a 25-yard field goal by John Arnold.   EIU's defense limited TTU to 121 first half yards and 239 yards for the game.

EIU tacked on two second quarter touchdowns and a Nick Bruno 22-yard field goal.   Whitlow scored on a 1-yard run at 13:48 of the 2nd quarter.   Whitlow later hit Adam Drake on a 3-yard pass.   EIU had 316 first half yards finishing the game with 598 yards. 

The Panthers added to their lead in the second half as Whitlow hit Drake two more times for touchdowns.  One was from 90-yards and the other from 8-yards out.  Drake had six catches for 153 yards and three touchdowns.

TTU scored on a 37-yard run by Ladarius Vanlier in the third quarter.   The possession was set up by an EIU fumble.  The Panthers turned it over four times on the day while getting two turnovers.

Kamu Grugier-Hill led the Panthers with 19 tackles adding a forced fumble and interception in the end zone which ended a Golden Eagles drive.   Fedney Delphonse added nine tackles. 

Nick Bruno had a pair of short field goals while adding a 63-yard rush on a fake punt in the fourth quarter. 


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