MARTIN, Tenn. (AP) — Sam Franklin rushed for 259 yards and his 28-yard touchdown run late in the fourth quarter lifted UT Martin past Missouri State 38-31 on Saturday night.
UT Martin won despite seeing a 24-7 halftime lead disappear when Missouri State scored 24 points in the second half, including 17 in the fourth quarter.
After Missouri State rallied and tied the game at 31 on a 4-yard run by Jacardia Wright, Franklin capped an 8-play, 76-yard drive with a strong run, breaking a tackle near the line of scrimmage and beating the last diving defender to the end zone. The play was in stark contrast to the first play of the game when Franklin raced untouched down the sideline for an 81-yard touchdown.
Franklin finished with three rushing touchdowns and the Skyhawks (1-1) had a total of 405 yards on the ground. Kinkead Dent added 107 yards passing with two touchdowns.
Jacob Clark had 332 yards passing and three touchdowns for the Bears (0-2).
The teams combined for 1,025 yards of total offense — Missouri State with 513 and UT Martin with 512.