Don’t Count Them Out Just Yet… Tennessee shuts out in-state opponent Chattanooga, 45-0

Published 12:02 am Tuesday, September 17, 2019

KNOXVILLE- Coming off of a heartbreaking finish last week in a double-overtime loss to BYU 26-29 and two weeks after the shocking upset by Georgia State 30-38, the Tennessee Volunteers needed a win Saturday against in-state rival UT-Chattanooga to make a much-needed statement.
The Volunteers would do just that after running out to an early lead and never looking back picking up their first win by a shutout score of 45-0.
After the Tennessee tradition of running through the Power T, things were underway with the opening kickoff at noon Saturday.
The Volunteers started things with a bang after Ty Chandler took the opening kick fifty-eight yards to the Mocs’ forty-one-yard line.
With the Volunteers rushing attack taking total control of the first drive Chandler would once again make an impact with a 13-yard touchdown run capped off by a perfect kick by Brent Cimaglia to put the Vols ahead 7-0 early.
The Vols weren’t done there, however, as a punt by the Mocs was blocked by Tyler Byrd and recovered by Brandon Johnson for a twenty-four-yard touchdown to make it a 14-0 game five minutes into the first quarter.
Once again the Tennessee defense would show their strength with an interception by defensive back Nigel Warrior that would be returned 22 yards down to the Chattanooga 16.
Jarrett Guarantano would help his team take advantage of the momentum finding his target Jauan Jennings for yet another score in the first quarter this time from twelve yards out to make it a 21-0 affair.
With yet another stop by the impressive Tennessee defense, it was time to see what the Vol offense had up their sleeve this time.
But things were halted when an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty put Tennessee in a fourth-down situation that would give the Mocs another shot to score.
Chattanooga seemed to start clicking when the quarterback Nick Tiano would carry the ball 13 yards up to midfield which would soon be followed by a 37 yard rush by Elijah Ibitokun-Hanks down to the eight-yard line.
Just as the Mocs seemed to be closing in a bad snap at the six-yard line forced a fumble that would be recovered by Darrell Taylor at the eleven.
To start the second quarter the Volunteers would move the ball to midfield in two plays thanks to catches by both Marquez Callaway and Princeton Fant followed by an impressive display of arm strength by Guarantano who would find Callaway once again for a 39-yard touchdown pass to make it 28-0.
After another punt by the Mocs, Tennessee took over with a chance to put this game away early. Moving the ball down the field quite consistently Guarantano would throw for his third touchdown finding Cedric Tillman for 28 yards and a five-touchdown advantage over the Chattanooga team.
With time winding down in the first half, Chattanooga quarterback Tiano fired a pass that would yet again be picked off this time by Jeremy Banks and taken to around midfield.
After some dink and dunk throws by backup QB J.T. Shrout, the Volunteers were in a position to strike yet again right before the half.
Unable to put the ball across the goal line, Cimaglia was able to get three points for Tennessee with a 34-yard field goal to make it 38-0 to end the half.
It was more of the same in the second half after a three and out by Chattanooga when a bad snap on the punt resulted in a turnover giving the Vols excellent field position.
Tennessee would take advantage of this with a five-yard touchdown run by the backup quarterback, Brian Maurer, to keep the blowout going 45-0.
On a drive that was controlled by the run game, the Mocs were able to bring the ball into the red zone but instead of scoring the Volunteers were given possession as a result of a turnover on downs.
However for what seemed like the first time this game the Vols had to punt the ball after three plays.
It didn’t matter though as the Tennessee defense stepped up once again with Banks intercepting his second pass of the game.
This would essentially lead to the end of the ball game as neither team would score for the remainder of the contest.
The Volunteers finished the contest with 195 yards on the ground and 165 yards through the air. Guarantano finished his stat line 7-for-8 with 142 yards and 3 touchdowns.

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