GREENVILLE, S.C. -- — Tyler Huff threw for 168 yards and a touchdown, four teammates scored rushing touchdowns, and Furman defeated Mercer 38-14 on Saturday in a Southern Conference opener.
Furman (3-1 and ranked No. 7 in the FCS coaches poll) led 17-14 in the third quarter before putting the game away with touchdowns on three consecutive drives. Myion Hicks scored on a 1-yard run, Huff hit Mason Pline for a 10-yard TD pass, and Jayquan Smith closed out the scoring with a 20-yard run.
Dominic Roberto and Wayne Anderson scored rushing touchdowns to help the Paladins build a 17-0 lead with 1 1/2 minutes left in the second quarter. Anderson's touchdown was set up by Luke Shiflett's recovery of a muffed punt at the Mercer 13-yard line.
But Mercer (2-2 and ranked No. 21) bounced back, driving 75 yards in five plays, getting on the board with Carter Peevy's 26-yard TD pass to Ty James with 7 seconds remaining in the half. The Bears closed to 17-14 on Peevy's 8-yard touchdown run midway through the third quarter before Furman's big closing run.
Huff completed 20 of 24 passes and was also Furman’s leading rusher, gaining 82 yards on 11 carries. Furman, the preseason favorite to win the SoCon championship, had totals of 222 yards rushing and 387 yards of offense.
Peevy was 11-of-16 passing for 123 yards and he, too, was his team's leading rusher with 66 yards on 13 carries. Mercer was held to 267 yards of total offense.
AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-football-poll