The Murray State football team fell behind, 14-0, early against Tennessee Tech and could never fully recover as the Golden Eagles took down the Racers, 27-24, at Tucker Stadium in Cookeville, Tennessee.
With the setback, Murray State falls to 4-5 overall and 4-2 in the Ohio Valley Conference while Tennessee Tech gets their first win of the season to put their record at 1-8 and 1-5 in the OVC.
Drew Anderson connected on 84% of his passes, going 34-41 for 340 yards and two touchdowns. The senior also ran for a touchdown for the fifth time this season, giving him the team lead in rushing touchdowns.
Malik Honeycutt was the top receiver for the Racers as he caught eight passes for 80 yards and touchdown, while Tyre Gray had seven receptions for 71 yards. D.J. Penick also caught a touchdown out of the backfield.
Tennessee Tech elected to receive the opening kickoff after winning the coin toss and marched down the field in 12 plays using a variety of short passes and short runs before Bailey Fisher found Melvin Holland, Jr. for a 20-yard touchdown.
On the ensuing kickoff, the Golden Eagles pinned the Racers at the one-yard line and forced a three-and-out. Using a short field after the punt, Fisher ran for a 19-yard touchdown to give TTU a 14-0 lead just eight minutes into the game.
Murray State responded on the following drive, using a 24-yard catch by Gray and a 21-yard rush by Anderson to set the Racers up at the four-yard line. Anderson then faked a screen pass to the left before running right, running into the end zone untouched.
The Racer defense picked up after the score, recovering a fumble off a bad Golden Eagle snap and allowing just a field goal before the half, but the offense was unable to add any more points as the Racers trailed 17-7 heading into the locker room.
Out of the break, Gabriel Vicente connected on a 30-yard field goal to cut the TTU lead to 17-10, but the Golden Eagles extended their lead back up to 14 with a 43-yard touchdown pass on the following drive.
The Racers responded later in the third quarter after starting a drive at the Tennessee Tech 26-yard line following a kick-catch interference by TTU as Anderson found Penick for a 15-yard diving touchdown reception.
The Golden Eagles tacked on a field goal early in the fourth quarter to push their lead back up to 10 with just over 10 minutes to go in the game. After trading punts, Anderson found Honeycutt in the corner of the end zone with 2:06 remaining in the game.
James Sappington attempted an onside kick, but it proved to be unsuccessful. One TTU first down iced the game as the Golden Eagles left the field victorious.
The Racers will return home next week when they take on Southeast Missouri at 11 a.m. at Roy Stewart Stadium. The game will be streamed for free on ESPN3.