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Kentucky knocks off Vanderbilt

The fightin’ Benny Snell’s take down Vanderbilt in a defensive struggle

Vanderbilt v Kentucky Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Benny Snell carried the ball 32 times for 169 yards and punched in the game-winning touchdown with 8:04 left in the game leading the Kentucky Wildcats to another win. The Cats improved to 6-1 and 4-1 within the SEC on the season with the 14-7 win over the Vanderbilt Commodores.

The game started off slow enough with only one touchdown being scored in the first quarter, as Kyle Shurmur found C.J. Bolar for a 29-yard touchdown pass after UK quarterback Terry Wilson fumble gave Vandy prime field position. The Wildcat defense had to step up immediately after that, as Lynn Bowden Jr. fumbled to give the Commodores another great scoring chance as they started on the Wildcat 40. They held though, forcing a punt after Vandy could only muster up two yards.

A puntfest broke out until Kentucky got the ball with 12 minutes left in the 2nd quarter at the Vanderbilt 48. They drove the ball taking 5:31 off the clock, as Lynn Bowden Jr. found redemption for the fumble as he caught a five-yard touchdown from Terry Wilson.

The second half of the game saw Derek Mason’s team squander opportunities. After a lengthy drive that saw a Shurmur interception taken off the board because of a defensive holding, Ryley Guay missed a 31-yard field goal. Not to be outdone though, Kentucky came right back down the field and Miles Butler missed a 39-yarder.

Vanderbilt had another chance on a drive that started in the third quarter came up short. With just under 14 minutes lift in the fourth on a fourth and one from the UK 16, Jamauri Wakefield fumbled and UK took over. The following drive is where Benny Snell took over. He carried it 10 times on 12 plays and punched it in from seven yards out to give Kentucky a lead it wouldn’t relinquish, as Vandy couldn’t find the end zone on its final two drives.

Kyle Shumur was just okay, going 15-for-23 for 216 yards and a touchdown. But he wasn’t able to convert some crucial third downs. Terry Wilson was not so good, finishing 3-for-9 for 18 yards and a touchdown, as Lynn Bowden Jr. was the only the one to catch a pass. Jamauri Wakefield led Vandy in rushing carrying the ball 19 times for 74 yards. Kentucky’s run defense was again fantastic only allowing 68 yards on 31 attempts.

Kentucky, who has clinched bowl eligibility, has a massive game in two weeks when they host Georgia the Bulldogs. However, they must go visit the Missouri Tigers in a game they can’t afford to overlook, but should win. Vanderbilt meanwhile loses another frustrating game that was very winnable, as they fall to 3-5 on the year and 0-4 in conference play. They go on the road to face the Arkansas Razorbacks in a game they should really win if they want to go bowling.