By Patrick Codo
The Southern Illinois Saluki football team played host to the Murray State Racers on family weekend. So the Dawgs wanted to give all the families a good game. Well they did just that by destroying the Racers 50-17 to put them at a record of 2-1. It was also the 6th annual blackout cancer game as all of the players showed their support of cancer.
Freshman D.J. Davis started things off by returning the opening kickoff 98 yards for the first touchdown of the game and the Saluki’s rolled from there. Although D.J. knew this win was not just for him, it was also for his family and especially his Aunt Lisa, who was shot and killed last week. He thanked his blockers and coaches and dedicated this return to his aunt. Here’s what Davis said about the return. Davis stated “We’ve been practicing that all week, “I just said to myself, ‘If they kick it to us, we need to take it to the house.” That is exactly what Davis did and the Saluki’s have been rolling from there.
The team was able to click on all cylinders. Josh Straughan threw for 289 and 4 touchdowns. Those 4 touchdowns were the most since Mark Ionnatti threw 4 touchdowns against the Indiana Hoosiers in September of 2015. That ties Starughan for third in most passing touchdowns in a single game in SIU history and marks the 18th time a saluki quarterback has thrown 4 touchdowns or more in a single contest. The Saluki’s were able to build up a 24-10 lead after the first quarter, and had a 38-10 lead at halftime. The running game for the Saluki’s was on point as Daquan Isom ran for over 100 yards and Cameron Walter was able to shut the door for the Saluki’s by having a 50-yard touchdown run give the Saluki’s a safe 50-17 lead. The defense was playing lockdown on the Racers all night. Chase Allen had ten tackles which tied him with Tom Anderson for 17th on the Salukis all-time list with 276 tackles.
For the Racers it was a down night, even though the offense did look pretty average, they still could not find their swagger as this loss drops them to 0-3 on the season.
The Saluki’s will have a bye week this week, but they will start Missouri Valley Conference play the following week at Northern Iowa on October 1st 2016 at 4pm and the Racers will open up Ohio Valley Conference play by hosting South East Missouri State next Saturday September 24th at 6pm.