No. 18 Panthers remain undefeated with 16-2 SAA victory over Rhodes

Aaron Sherrill (Photo by Cari Dean)
Aaron Sherrill (Photo by Cari Dean)

MEMPHIS, Tenn.—No. 18 Birmingham-Southern opened Southern Athletic Association play with an 16-2 victory against Rhodes today at Crain Field in Memphis, Tenn.

The Panthers remain undefeated at 4-0, while the Lynx fall to 2-1. Today marks BSC's fourth straight win against Rhodes over the past six seasons. Today's game marked the first SAA game for both teams in their new conference.

BSC scored on its second drive, using four plays to score on a five-yard pass from senior Tyson Beacham to senior Aaron Sherrill. Junior Ryan Laughlin's extra point was good to give the Panthers a 7-0 lead at the 4:12 mark of the first quarter.

BSC led 7-0 at halftime but Rhodes got on the board in the third quarter. After a long drive by the Lynx to the BSC one-yard line, the Panther defense held steady and Rhodes turned the ball over on downs. BSC took over at their own one-yard line, and Rhodes was then able to get a safety, tackling senior Shawn Morris in the end zone, cutting the score to 7-2 with 7:39 left in the quarter.

The Panthers scored on their next possession on a 30-yard field goal by Laughlin to go up 10-2 at the 1:25 mark of the third.

In the fourth quarter, after another Rhodes turnover on downs, the Panthers drove 60 yards to score once more, this time on a one-yard dash by Morris into the end zone. BSC tried for the two-point conversion, but it was no good, and the Panthers led 16-2 with 10:34 left in the game.

Neither team was able to get in the red zone again for the remainder of the game, and the Panthers came away with the 16-2 win in the first-ever SAA game for both teams.

Beacham was 7-9 for 48 yards with one touchdown; senior Jimmy Stainback also saw action and was 5-7 for 66 yards. Morris led with 76 yards rushing on 15 carries, and junior Matt Hansard led with 38 yards on two catches.

Senior Nick Gordon led the BSC defense with 10 tackles, including seven solo tackles, two sacks, two tackles-for-loss, a forced fumble and a pass break-up.

For Rhodes, quarterback Blake Box was 26-39 for 181 yards, and also led on the ground with 39 yards rushing. Jack Lartigue led with 72 yards on 10 receptions. Joseph Raby led the Lynx on defense, tackling Morris for the safety and recording nine total tackles, 2.5 tackles-for-loss, and a sack.

BSC returns home to Panther Stadium next Saturday, Sept. 29, to face Austin College at 1 p.m.