By Carla Parker
The Kennesaw State University Owls pulled out an exciting 18-10 win over the Shorter Hawks Sept. 19 at Fifth Third Bank Stadium.
With eight seconds left on the clock, the Hawks tried to attempt a 38-yard field goal. However, the snap was fumbled by the holder and linebacker Dez Billingslea picked up the ball and returned it 65 yards for a touchdown with no time left on the clock.
The win gave the Owls (3-0) its third victory of its inaugural season. Shorter falls to 0-2 on the season.
Kennesaw State got it going early in the first quarter with a five-play drive that ended in a 42-yard field goal by Justin Thompson, giving the Owls a 3-0 lead.
The Owls defense came out strong, forcing a three-and-out for Shorter. The Owls took took a 6-0 lead midway in the quarter on a 26-yard field goal by Thompson.
Shorter got on the scoreboard early in the second quarter on a 44-yard field goal by Kenny Langford, cutting the Owls lead to 6-3. Kennesaw State had a nice drive going following the field goal, but a fumble by quarterback Trey White stalled the drive.
White had another turnover late in the quarter when he was picked off by Wesley Clay, returning it 73 yards before he was tackled at the 2-yard line. The turnover led to a 2-yard touchdown run by Aki Coles, giving the Hawks a 10-6 lead.
Thompson missed another field goal from 43 yard out midway in the third quarter, however he redeemed himself at the end of the quarter with a 40-yard field goal to cut Shorter’s lead to 10-9.
The Owls defense stepped up in the fourth quarter, led by defensive back Taylor Henkle, who picked off Shorter quarterback Aaron Bryant at the 50-yard line. However, the Owls could not take advantage of the turnover, ending the drive with a missed field goal—Thompson’s third missed of the game.
The defense came through for the Owls again, forcing Shorter to punt. The Owls following possession ended in a 28-yard field goal by Thompson, giving Kennesaw State a 12-10 lead with 1:31 left to play.
The Hawks drove down the field with time running out, putting themselves in position to win before the failed field goal attempt.
Kennesaw State will try to improve to 4-0 on the season when it travels to Dayton, Ohio to take on Dayton Sept. 26 a 6 p.m.