(gomocs.com)- The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga football team wrapped up its spring practice with the annual Spring Game at Finley Stadium this afternoon. Over 2,300 fans turned out for the festivities that included a Kids Clinic, Wing Cook-Off and intrasquad scrimmage.
The teams were evenly divided with the No. 1 offense and No. 2 defense on the Blue Team. UTC's defensive starters and second offensive unit made up the second team. Regardless of the lineup, defense was key on both sides of the ball as the final talley ended in a 7-7 tie.
Junior quarterback Alejandro Bennifield led the Blue Team and is the heir-apparent to take over the starting position from graduating All-American and three-time Southern Conference Player of the YearJacob Huesman.
The Blue squad put the ball in the air early and often, as Bennifield piled up 120 yards on 10-19 passing. He started off a little shaky, throwing an interception in the endzone to senior Cedric Nettles. He had another pick in the first quarter that was hauled in by junior Lucas Webb.
Webb's interception eventually led to the first score of the game. Sophomore Kyle Nalls capped off a 10-play drive by the White team with a three-yard dive into the endzone for a 7-0 lead.
Bennifield tied the score just before intermission when he scrambled on the far side on first-and-10 from White's 42. He looked up just in time to see a wide open Kota Nix, who took the pass for the score.
The 10-minute halftime was just as lively as the game, as the 2015 seniors got their SoCon Championship rings. It was the first time any of the players had seen the hardware, so both teams left their huddles to mob their former teammates and catch a glimpse of their third straight Championship jewelry.
The Mocs 2015 Southern Conference Championship rings.
The second half saw mostly backups battling on both sides of the ball. Freshman Le'Vonte Larry made three tackles-for-loss, as did sophomore transfer Ben Schrider.
Nalls grabbed the game's Offensive MVP honor for his score in the first half. Nettles was named player of the game on the defensive side of the ball. Other postgame honors included Bennifield taking the Bob Davis Winter Warrior Award and the quarterbacks winning the Athletic Performance offseason contest.
The spring semester is winding down at UTC, with classes ending next week. The Mocs now turn their attention to summer workouts and eventually the start of camp in early August. The season opener is Thursday, Sept. 1, against Shorter at 7:00 p.m. (E.D.T.). Season tickets are on sale now on GoMocs.com.
2016 Chattanooga Football Spring Game Stats Score – White 7 – Blue 7 Offensive MVP – Kyle Nalls (So. – RB) – White Team – 3 yard TD run Defensive MVP – Cedric Nettles (Sr. – DB) – White Team – INT in the endzone Winter Warrior Award – Alejandro Bennifield (Jr. – QB) Athletic Performance Offseason Conditioning Award – Quarterbacks
Wing Contest Winners 1st place: Bill Cobb 2nd place: Owl's Nest BBQ 3rd place: Ken Maury