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Mississippi State Football Struggles in 20-10 Loss to Tennessee

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MSU falls to 3-3.

Hail State Pics/Mississippi State Athletics

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The Mississippi State football team amassed just 267 yards of total offense in a 20-10 loss to Tennessee Saturday afternoon at Neyland Stadium.

The Bulldogs now fall to 3-3 (1-2 SEC). With the win, the Volunteers earn their first Southeastern Conference win and improve to 2-4 (1-2 SEC).

The Vols defense limited SEC’s leading-rusher, Kylin Hill, to just 13 yards rushing on 11 carries. They also limited the Bulldogs to 146 yards passing. Graduate senior quarterback Tommy Stevens got the start in the game and completed 6-of-11 passes for 67 yards and two interceptions,

True freshman quarterback Garrett Shrader, who entered the game in the third quarter, completed 5-of-10 passes for 79 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Shrader also rushed for a team-high 62 yards on 13 carries.

Junior Osirus Mitchell led the team with 58 yards receiving.

On its first possession of the game, Tennessee went down to MSU’s 12-yard line, but junior cornerback Cameron Dantzler came away with an interception in the endzone to end the Vols’ threat.

Tennessee scored the opening points of the game when junior running back Tim Jordan rushed for a 15-yard touchdown to give Tennessee a 7-0 lead in the first quarter.

Junior kicker Jace Christmann then put the Bulldogs on the board early in the second quarter with a career-long 51-yard field goal, making it a 7-3 game.

The Vols threatened again with a 68-yard drive in the second quarter, but it ended with another Bulldog interception in the endzone, this time from senior safety Brian Cole II.

Tennessee’s Brent Cimaglia then made a field goal in the second and third quarters to push the Vols’ lead to 13-3.

Shrader led the Bulldogs on a eight-play, 90-yard drive in the fourth quarter that was capped off with a 17-yard touchdown pass to senior wide receiver Deddrick Thomas to draw within three points with 8:27 to go in the game.

Tennessee senior quarterback Jarrett Guarantano then connected with senior wide receiver Tyler Byrd from 39 yards out to end the game’s scoring at 20-10.

The Bulldog defense was led by junior linebacker Erroll Thompson, who tallied 13 tackles and one tackle for loss.

MSU will return to action on Saturday when they host No. 5 LSU at Davis Wade Stadium. The kickoff time will be announced late Saturday night or early Sunday morning.