CRESTVIEW HILLS, Ky. — No. 9-ranked Lindsey Wilson scored touchdowns in all three facets of the game to beat host Thomas More (Ky.) 55-21 today at BB&T Field.
Cameron Dukes led the Blue Raider offense with over 400 yards passing and four touchdowns, Jaylen Boyd returned a kickoff 94 yards for a score and James Todd and Cordarien Trice each recorded pick-sixes to help the Blue Raiders (7-0, 4-0 in the Mid-South Conference Bluegrass Division) to their third 50-plus performance this season.
Lindsey Wilson never trailed in its first-ever trip to BB&T Field thanks to a fast start.
After the Blue Raider defense forced a Thomas More (3-4, 1-2) punt during the game’s opening drive, Dukes connected with Joshua Lewis for 88 yards on Lindsey Wilson’s first offensive play for the 7-0 lead. Lewis ended with six catches for a career-high 127 yards — his first 100-yard receiving game.
On Thomas More’s next drive, Stevie Miller delivered a blow to Saints quarterback Justin Post that jarred the ball free for the game’s first turnover. The Lindsey Wilson defense — that entered the game with 17 takeaways on the season — forced Thomas More into four turnovers on the day. Lindsey Wilson scored 28 points off the Thomas More miscues.
The Blue Raiders marched six plays and 34 yards to take a 14-0 lead with just over nine minutes left in the half. Dukes found a wide-open Jaleel Warren just outside of the endzone and Warren scampered in for his third touchdown reception of the season.
Thomas More cut the deficit in half on an eight-play, 75-yard drive, but Boyd quickly made it a two-score game again with a kickoff return for a touchdown to push the lead to 20-7.
Boyd took the kickoff at the six-yard line and maneuvered through the heart of the Saints’ kick-coverage before emerging untouched over the final 60 yards for the first special teams’ touchdown of the season.
The 94 yards is tied for the third-longest and marks the 11th kickoff return for a touchdown in the program’s history.
Lindsey Wilson extended its lead to 27-7 midway through the second quarter when Dukes rushed six yards untouched into the endzone for his sixth rushing score of the season.
Thomas More looked to grab the momentum heading into the locker room with a touchdown with 1:27 left in the first half to trim the Blue Raider lead to 27-14.
But the quick-strike Blue Raiders needed just 56 seconds to push the lead back to 20 at the break.
Dukes tossed his second bomb of the day, hitting Terrill Cole Jr. in stride for a 79-yard touchdown for the 34-14 lead. Dukes finished the game with a career-high 406 passing yards and four touchdown passes to go along with his rushing touchdown.
While the offense shined in the first half, it was the Lindsey Wilson defense that closed the deal in the second. The Blue Raider defense did not allow a score after the break while posting two touchdowns of its own in the fourth quarter.
The Lindsey Wilson offense sputtered a bit out of the half and the Thomas More special teams took advantage.
Da’marco Canty took a Lindsey Wilson punt back 54 yards for the Saints’ lone score in the second half to pull Thomas More within 34-21.
The Saints threatened to pull even closer only to have the Blue Raider defense turn them away.
Lindsey Wilson — who entered the game as the only team in the NAIA without a lost fumble this season — fumbled in the early stages of the fourth quarter to give Thomas More the ball on the Blue Raiders’ 30-yard line.
Three plays later Ty Tevis snagged his first career interception to give Lindsey Wilson the momentum back.
The Blue Raiders took that momentum, driving 91 yards on eight plays to push the lead to 41-21. Dukes connected Boyd out of the backfield and Boyd did the rest — including leaping over a Thomas More defender — en route to a 44-yard score. Boyd now has eight touchdowns this season — four rushing, three receiving and one kickoff return.
The remainder of the day’s scoring came from the Lindsey Wilson secondary.
Todd returned an interception 55 yards for a score and Trice added a 35-yard touchdown following an interception for the 55-21 lead and eventual win. Todd’s pick is his team-leading third of the season while Trice records his first of his career.
Luke Bowman led the Blue Raiders with nine tackles while Todd and T.J. James each recorded seven tackles.
Lindsey Wilson improves to 7-0 for the third time in its history, matching the 2016 and 2017 seasons.
Lindsey Wilson returns to action at 5 p.m. CT on Saturday, October 26, as the Blue Raiders travel to Pikeville (Ky.).