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WKU Football defeats MTSU 31-10

Hilltoppers move to 3-2 on season
Dominic Di Palermo
Running back Elijah Young #3 jumps over MTSU safety Tra Fluellen to score a touchdown during a game at L.T Smith Stadium in Bowling Green on Thursday, Sept. 28, 2023. WKU won 31-10.

WKU’s recent dominance in the coveted 100 miles of hate rivalry continued Thursday night with a  31-10 win over Middle Tennessee State. 

WKU’s win against the Blue Raiders is the fifth straight win for the Hilltoppers in the series. WKU now leads the series 37-35-1 all-time. 

Graduate quarterback Austin Reed went 30 for 52 with 297 yards and two touchdowns and a pick in the win. His partner in crime junior Malachi Corley had a team leading eight receptions for 81 yards. 


It was a slow start offensively for both teams. Four straight punts between the two teams riddled the first eight minutes of the ball game. While the MTSU offense continued to struggle in the first 15 minutes, WKU found their stride midway through the quarter. A Davion Ervin-Poindexter receiving touchdown and a Lucas Carneiro career long field goal gave the Hilltoppers a 10-0 lead heading into the second. 

WKU was firing on all cylinders in the second quarter. The Hilltoppers outscored the Blue Raiders 13-3 in the period including a 13-play, 75-yard touchdown drive that set the tone for the quarter. Defensively, WKU forced a punt, fumble and held the Blue Raiders to a field goal when backed inside their own 10. 

The third quarter was controlled by the Blue Raiders. MTSU possessed the ball 10 out of the 15 minutes in the quarter with seven points on two drives and 28 total plays. However, the WKU defense held strong on the second of the two drives. MTSU took the ball all the way down to the WKU three but was stuffed on a designed QB run on fourth down. 

The fourth down stop proved to be a huge momentum shift in the ball game. WKU was able to hold the Blue Raiders scoreless in the fourth quarter and used an 11-play, 57 yard drive of their own to put the final nail in the coffin. WKU defeated their rivals 31-10. 

Scoring Summary


A four play, 49-yard drive capped off by a touchdown reception from redshirt senior Davion Ervin-Poindexter ended the early scoreless streak putting the Hilltooppers up 7-0. 

Redshirt freshman kicker Lucas Carneiro hit a career high 45-yard field goal to extend the Hilltopper lead to 10. 


MTSU got in the board with a field goal five minutes into the second, 10-3

WKU responded to the Blue Raider field goal with a methodical, 13-play 75 yard drive capped off by a touchdown reception by redshirt freshman Easton Messer 

A late Blue Raider fumble inside their own thirty lead to a QB sneak by Reed. Then a miscue on the PAT made it 23-3. 


MTSU opened play up in the second half with a six minute, 75 yard drive that ended in a touchdown to make it 23-10.


Running Back Elijah Moore hurdled a man and took it to the house for a 14 yard touchdown rush, 31-10.  

WKU will kickoff a two game road trip next Thursday against the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs at 7 p.m. CT.

Football reporter Jake McMahon can be reached at [email protected].

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