Out loping the competition


Sierra Gray

Freshman running backs Ja’Kori Bell (22) and Deshon Cowling (35) celebrating after a Missouri Western turnover inside Fred G. Hughes Stadium against Mo. West on Sept. 10, 2016. Southern is 11-9-1 at home against Washburn. 

Kelvin Duley II

The Missouri Southern football team got in the win column for the first time this season last Saturday on the road against Neb-Kearney inside Cope Stadium. It’s Southern’s first win since Sept. 19, 2015.

Following the Northwest Missouri game on Sept. 24, Southern seen some things on film in that game that they wanted to build off of in the game against Neb-Kearney.

For the second consecutive week, the Lions jumped out to a two touchdown lead in the first quarter. Senior cornerback Xavier Marsden was the first player to make a big play for the Lions. Marsden caught an interception on the opening drive of the Lopers. Southern couldn’t capitalize on the turnover and punted on their first two possessions.

It was Southern’s final two possessions in the first quarter where they would leave their mark.

Senior Anthony Cannon caught a 23-yard touchdown reception Southern’s third offensive pos-session. It was Cannon’s first reception of the season and first reception in a game since Nov. 15, 2015. After forcing another Lopers punt, junior quarterback TJ Fleeton rushed for a 1-yard touchdown to put the Lions up 14-0. That’s back-to-back weeks Fleeton has found the end zone with his feet.

The Lopers would make it a one possession game before the half as they scored a touchdown. Southern took a 14-7 lead into the locker room.

Southern put up the only points in the third quarter as senior kicker Brock Renken hit a 20-yard field goal increasing Southern’s lead to 10 heading into the fourth.

Southern put the game on ice with a 56-yard touchdown reception from Fleeton to freshman Josiah Bennett. That’s back-to-back weeks Bennett has caught a touchdown reception for over 55 yards. Southern would go on to win, 24-14.

“It feels great to get a win finally,” said senior defensive lineman Chris Williams.

“In the locker room you can tell players moods have changed. We’re definitely hungry for more.“

“I take last year’s lost personally,” said Fleeton on last season’s loss to Washburn on the road.

“Especially, how close the game was last year. I’m looking at it as revenge.“

Key Stat

Southern’s first quarter offense: The Southern offense has put up 27 unanswered points in the first quarter the last two games. In the three previous first quarters this season, the Lions were outscored 42-0.

Southern will be looking to make it back-to-back victories tomorrow for the Homecoming game against Washburn inside Fred G. Hughes Stadium. Kickoff is set for 3 p.m.