Big plays help VMI top Chattanooga 31-24

LEXINGTON, Va. -- Carter Johnson scored on a blocked kick in the second quarter and VMI used big scoring plays on offense and defense in the third quarter to defeat Chattanooga 31-24 on Saturday.

The Mocs were punting from their 32 when Devin Carper got in on Gabe Borings's attempt and Carter scooped up the loose ball and stepped into the end zone to put the Keydets ahead 17-10.

In the third quarter Reece Udinski found Jakob Herres for a 54-yard touchdown and then Jarrod Richmond scooped up a fumble and rumbled 64 yards for a score, putting the Keydets (5-7, 4-4 Southern Conference) up 31-10.

Nick Tiano threw for a touchdown in the third quarter and scored on an 8-yard run with 4:43 left to play to pull the Mocs (6-6, 5-3) within a touchdown but VMI ran out the clock.

Chattanooga had a 451-264 advantage in total offense. Herres had eight catches for 153 yards and two touchdowns for VMI while Elijah Ibitokun-Hanks ran for 132 yards for the Mocs.

In ending a four-game losing streak, VMI won five games for the first time since 2003 and four conference games for the first time since 1979.