SPARTANBURG, S.C. (Wofford SID) – The Wofford College football team was defeated 24-21 in overtime on Saturday afternoon at Gibbs Stadium. With the game tied at the end of regulation, the Bulldogs scored a field goal to open the overtime period. The Terriers gained a first down, but fumbled and the ball was recovered by The Citadel to win the game.
Wofford moves to 4-3 on the season and 2-2 in the Southern Conference, while #5 The Citadel is 7-0 and 5-0 in the league. The Terriers led the Bulldogs in almost every statistical category, but could not overcome four turnovers in the contest. Lorenzo Long had 103 rushing yards for the Terriers, while Tyler Renew led the Bulldogs with 84 rushing yards.
“We can’t put the ball on the ground,” said head coach Mike Ayers. “They are too good to give them more opportunities. As far as fight, as far as guys hanging in there, and believing and trusting each other and getting after it, I will take that. The defense played well. The staff did a great job and the kids played and executed.”
The Terriers had the ball first and gained one first down before punting. The Bulldogs then gained a first down and punted back to Wofford. Brandon Goodson went 29 yards for a first down, but the Terriers were stopped and punted. The Citadel went three-and-out and punted.
Brandon Goodson added a 26-yard run for a first down, with Lennox McAfee and Lorenzo Long added first downs to move the ball to the one yard line. Chase Nelson capped the drive with a one-yard touchdown and Wofford had a 7-0 lead with 2:30 left in the first quarter. The Bulldogs went three-and-out and punted, but the punt was blocked by Cole Cleary and the ball was recovered by Armani Helligar at the 19-yard line. Wofford had one first down, but a fumble was recovered by the Bulldogs at the six-yard line. The Citadel had one first down before punting back to the Terriers with 12:01 on the clock in the second quarter.
Wofford punted after a three-and-out and the Bulldogs used a 36-yard reception to move the ball across midfield. A personal foul call on third down forced The Citadel to punt and Wofford took over at the four-yard line. Will Gay had a rushing first down, but Wofford had to punt with 2:16 left in the first half. After a first down, Dylan Young picked off a pass and returned it to the 48-yard line with 37 seconds left. Lorenzo Long had a 21-yard run and David Marvin hit a 41-yard field goal to end the first half with a 10-0 lead.
The Citadel opened the second half with the ball and went three-and-out and punted. Wofford also went three-and-out and punted, with the Bulldogs starting at the 20-yard line. The Citadel went three-and-out and Wofford took over near midfield. After a first down by penalty, Wofford ended the drive with a 39-yard field goal by David Marvin. The Terriers lead was 13-0 with 6:46 left in the third quarter.
The Bulldogs gained three first downs on their next drive. On fourth-and-two, Reggie Williams went 34-yards for a touchdown to cut the lead to 13-7 with 1:33 on the clock in the third quarter. The Terriers fumbled on their first play from scrimmage and it was recovered by the Bulldogs at the 16-yard line. They had fourth-and-goal from the one and Dominique Allen scored up the middle to give the Bulldogs a 14-13 lead with 12:55 left in the fourth quarter.
On the next drive by the Terriers, Brandon Goodson picked up a first down and then Joe Newman added a first down on a 19-yard run. Will Gay cut back inside and converted a third down to move inside the 20. Lennox McAfee scored from 16-yards out and a pass to Chandler Gouger for the two-point conversion was good for a 21-14 lead with 8:09 left in the fourth quarter. The Bulldogs went three-and-out and punted. Wofford took over and on third down a pitch by Brandon Goodson was intercepted by Kailik Williams and returned 13-yards for a touchdown. The PAT tied the game at 21 with 5:57 left in the fourth quarter.
With the ball back, Lennox McAfee, Lorenzo Long and Will Gay had rushing first downs. A 49-yard field goal attempt into the wind was blocked with 1:10 on the clock. A three-and-out and punt gave Wofford the ball with seven seconds left. The Terriers took a knee to send the game to overtime.
The Citadel had the ball first and on a field goal attempt, Wofford was offside and the Bulldogs had a first down. A 21-yard field goal was good and The Citadel had a 24-21 lead. Lorenzo Long ran for a first down on the first play for the Terriers, but a fumble by Will Gay was recovered by Joe Crochet to give The Citadel the victory.
Wofford had 343 total yards, with 321 rushing. The Citadel had 240 total yards, 190 of which were rushing. Wofford had an 18 to 11 advantage in first downs. Wofford was 4-of-12 on third downs. The Citadel was 5-of-17 on third down and 2-of-2 on fourth down. The Citadel was called for three penalties, while Wofford was whistled twice. Wofford had a 32:44 to 27:16 time of possession advantage.
Wofford vs. The Citadel Post-Game Notes
The Terrier defense has not allowed a 100-yard rusher in a game this season. They allowed only 190 rushing yards by the Bulldogs, who entered the game with the nation’s top rushing offense.
Lorenzo Long had 103 rushing yards. It marked his 13th career 100 yard game and fifth this season. He now has 2,835 career rushing yards to rank 7th in school history.
The game marked the 71st Homecoming contest at Wofford … The Terriers are 46-23-2 all-time in Homecoming games … Mike Ayers is 21-8 in Homecoming games at Wofford.
Wofford’s John Patterson left the game in the first half with a neck injury. His status will be updated on Monday.
It was the first overtime game of the season for both teams. Wofford is now 4-4 all-time in overtime games.
Attendance was 11,102 at Gibbs Stadium. It marked the largest home crowd since a 2010 playoff game against Georgia Southern.
Wofford remains at home next weekend as the Terriers host Mercer at 1:30 p.m. on October 29.