Massachusetts at Vanderbilt

Vanderbilt 49, UMass 7

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Jordan Rodgers threw for 217 yards and two touchdowns and ran for a score to lead Vanderbilt to a 49-7 victory over Massachusetts on Saturday night.

Sluggish most of the penalty-filled first half, the Commodores (4-4) broke open a seven-point game with two late first-half touchdowns in 55 seconds. They added four touchdowns in the third quarter to claim successive wins for the first time since starting 3-0 last year.

Along with an interception return for a score by Trey Wilson, Jonathan Krause returned a punt 40 yards to the end zone. It marked the first time a Vanderbilt punt return went the distance since 1999.

Massachusetts (0-8) remains winless in its first year in the Football Bowl Subdivision.

Vanderbilt running back Zac Stacy, the school's all-time rushing leader, exited five minutes into the game with an injury. He later returned to the sideline wearing a splint on his right ankle.

Leading just 7-0, Rodgers helped wake up the Commodores with a 25-yard touchdown pass to Kris Kentera with 1:53 left in the first half. After a fumble by UMass on the ensuing kickoff, Rodgers took advantage of a short field. He rushed in for a 4-yard touchdown to give Vanderbilt a 21-0 lead with 58 seconds to go before halftime.

Vanderbilt then overwhelmed the Minutemen, scoring four touchdowns in a five-minute span in the third quarter.

Rodgers started the scoring flurry with a 14-yard touchdown to Chris Boyd. Less than 90 seconds later, Trey Wilson extended his own school record with his fourth career interception return for a touchdown. The 17-yard return was his second score of the year. Only Tennessee's Jackie Walker has returned more interceptions for touchdowns, scoring five from 1969-71.

Vanderbilt entered with a Southeastern Conference-low five turnovers but forced three against UMass.

Highly-touted freshman Brian Kimbrow showed off his electrifying speed on a 74-yard touchdown. He finished with 98 yards on seven carries but also fumbled.

Krause capped off the scoring by taking a short punt and sprinting 40 yards untouched to the end zone for a 49-0 lead with 1:05 left in the third quarter. The last Vanderbilt player to score on a punt return was Jimmy Williams, who had a 65-yard return against Northern Illinois on Sept. 11, 1999.

UMass snapped a streak of seven scoreless quarters when A.J. Doyle threw a 10-yard strike to Deion Walker with 6:05 remaining.

Vanderbilt played undisciplined on its opening drive. The Commodores committed six penalties for 50 yards to stall a drive that ended with a pooch punt by Rodgers. Three offensive linemen drew flags, including a 15-yard penalty on center Joe Townsend for an illegal chop block. An illegal shift followed for a first-and-30 at Vanderbilt's own 38, leading to a timeout by coach James Franklin.

That didn't stop the mental errors. Five offensive linemen committed penalties and Vanderbilt tied a season-high with 11 penalties for 80 yards.

The biggest loss, however, came when Stacy went down hard after catching a screen pass and had to be helped off the field.

Krause's 28-yard punt return - then a season-high - set up the first score. Two plays later, Wesley Tate broke off for a 25-yard touchdown. Tate spun off a tackle and trotted inside the far pylon for a 7-0 lead with 5:34 left in the first quarter. He finished with a career-high 81 yards on 15 carries - all in the first half.

After gaining possession on a failed fourth-and-1 try by Vanderbilt, UMass also gambled. Instead of kicking a field goal, Jordan Broadnax was stopped on fourth-and-1 at the Vanderbilt 9-yard line. The Minuteman also failed to convert a fourth-and-4 on their next possession. The Commodores capitalized, marching 72 yards in eight plays. Kentera was left wide open and hauled in the short pass from Rodgers for his first career touchdown.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Scoring Summary
VANDYWesley Tate 25 yd run (Carey Spear kick)
VANDYKris Kentera 25 yd pass from Jordan Rodgers (Ryan Fowler kick)
VANDYJordan Rodgers 4 yd run (Carey Spear kick)
VANDYChris Boyd 14 yd pass from Jordan Rodgers (Ryan Fowler kick)
VANDYTrey Wilson 17 yd interception return (Carey Spear kick)
VANDYBrian Kimbrow 74 yd run (Ryan Fowler kick)
VANDYJonathan Krause 40 yd punt return (Carey Spear kick)
MADeion Walker 10 yd pass from A.J. Doyle (Blake Lucas kick)
 
Team Stats
 MAVANDY
First Downs1622
Third Down Efficiency5-173-9
Fourth Down Efficiency2-51-2
Plays-Net Yards73-26459-443
Rushes-Yds32-5437-226
Passing Yds210217
Kick Return Yds15024
Punt Return Yds1193
Passes23-41-217-22-0
Punts6-2563-141
Fumbles-Lost4-13-2
Penalties-Yds11-9411-80
Time of Poss.34:625:54
 
Individual Stats
RUSHING
MA: Michael Cox 17-56, Mike Wegzyn 4-2, A.J. Doyle 7-1, Jordan Broadnax 1-0, Chris Burns 1--1, Jamal Wilson 2--4
VANDY: Brian Kimbrow 7-98, Wesley Tate 15-81, Jordan Rodgers 3-22, Zac Stacy 5-15, Austyn Carta-Samuels 1-10, Warren Norman 3-8, Josh Grady 0-2, Team 3--10
PASSING
MA: Mike Wegzyn 15-27-162-1, A.J. Doyle 8-14-48-1
VANDY: Jordan Rodgers 17-21-217-0, Austyn Carta-Samuels 0-1-0-0
RECEIVING
MA: Marken Michel 6-56, Deion Walker 6-51, Michael Cox 3-49, Rob Blanchflower 2-15, Alan Williams 2-14, Tajae Sharpe 1-17, Bernard Davis 1-9, Jordan Broadnax 1-4, Elgin Long 1--5
VANDY: Jordan Matthews 10-112, Chris Boyd 4-59, Kris Kentera 1-25, Fitz Lassing 1-12, Zac Stacy 1-9
 
Standings
TeamStandingsConferenceOverall
Massachusetts6th Mid American East1-71-11
Vanderbilt4th SEC East4-48-4

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