VIDEO: Florida Tech Defense Dominates, But Panthers Fall To North Alabama 30-7 as Tropical Storm Approaches
By Daniel Supraner, Director of Athletic Communications // October 8, 2017
turned the ball over a season-high four times
SPACE COAST DAILY TV: Alan Zlotorzynski provide a a post-game report from Alabama as Florida Tech falls to North Alabama on the road Saturday night 30-7.
SPACE COAST DAILY TV: Florida Tech Head Coach Steve Englehart after the Panthers lose on the road to North Alabama 30-7.
FLORENCE, ALABAMA – The Florida Tech football team struggled in its road Gulf South Conference game against defending league champion North Alabama on Saturday night, falling to the Lions 30-7 at Braly Municipal Stadium.
With the loss, the Panthers dropped to 3-3 on the season and 2-2 in GSC play. UNA moved to 2-3 overall and 2-2 in the GSC.
Florida Tech found it difficult to generate much offense against the Lions’ defense but still wound up outgaining North Alabama 211-134. However, the Panthers turned the ball over a season-high four times in the contest, which led to 20 points for UNA.
Mark Cato got the start at quarterback and finished 13-of-25 for 129 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions. Cato was also sacked four times in the game.
Antwuan Haynes racked up 53 yards on 16 carries. Demetrius Frazier led all players with five receptions, while Kevin Purlett recorded a game-high 61 receiving yards and a touchdown through the air.
J.T. Hassell ended with a game-best 7.0 tackles, including 1.5 tackles for loss and a sack, while Evan Thompson collected 6.0 tackles. Jimmy Hinel, Adonis Davis and Darius Goodman recorded one sack apiece.
UNA took a 3-0 lead at the 6:19 mark of the first quarter on a 23-yard field goal by Chandler Carrera.
Florida Tech answered 45 seconds after the Lions’ score, as Cato connected with Purlett for a 50-yard touchdown reception that gave the Panthers a 7-3 lead.
The home team regained control of the game early in the second half when Will Evans blocked Kyle Gullikson’s punt attempt on the FIT 35-yard line. UNA’s Jamal Jackson recovered the ball on the play and returned it 22 yards for a touchdown.
A pair of short touchdown runs by Dre Hall gave UNA a 24-7 advantage with 33 seconds to go in the third quarter.
The final points of the game came with 3:12 left in the fourth quarter, as Trent Chmelik had his pass picked off by Maurice Carnell, who returned it 28 yards to make it 30-7.
Florida Tech will look to bounce back from its second loss in a row when it travels to Tigerville, South Carolina for a showdown with North Greenville on Saturday, Oct. 14.
The game is a rematch of last season’s NCAA Playoff game, which the Crusaders won 27-13 at Florida Tech Panther Stadium. Kickoff is set for noon ET at Younts Stadium.
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