Football Falls to No. 8 Tennessee, 40-13
BATON ROUGE – Hendon Hooker threw for 239 yards and two touchdowns to lead No. 8 Tennessee past No. 25 LSU, 40-13, on Saturday morning in Tiger Stadium.
LSU fell to 4-2 with the loss, while the Volunteers improved to 5-0 on the year. The Tigers return to action next Saturday in Gainesville against Florida at 6:00 p.m. CT on ESPN.
Quarterback Jayden Daniels went 32-of-45 for 300 yards, a touchdown and an interception.
Senior linebacker Micah Baskerville recorded a team-high 15 tackles, one for loss with a QB hurry. Seniors Jarrick Bernard-Converse and Greg Brooks finished with 11 and 10 tackles, respectively.
Malik Nabers led the offense in receiving with six catches for 80 yards.
Jack Bech muffed the opening kickoff, which was recovered by the Volunteers. Tennessee set up shop at the LSU 27-yard line. Jabari Small took advantage of LSU’s mistake with a 1-yard touchdown run to give Tennessee an quick 7-0 lead out of the gate.
Jay Bramblett’s 52-yard punt was returned for 58 yards to the LSU 25-yard line by Dee Williams.
Brooks stopped Small for no gain on 3rd-and-2, which limited the Vols to a 35-yard field goal by Chase McGrath, extending Tennessee’s lead to 10-0 with 11:08 remaining in the first quarter.
On 4th-and-4, Daniels found Kayshon Boutte for a 3-yard gain, but was stopped short of the marker, forcing a turnover on downs at the Tennessee 11-yard line. The Vols would turn it into points, going 68 yards on 11 plays as McGrath converted a 38-yard field goal to claim a 13-0 lead.
Hooker found Jalin Hyatt for a 45-yard touchdown to extend the Tennessee lead to 20-0 with 14:39 to go in the second quarter.
With 3:05 remaining in the half, Williams punched in a 1-yard touchdown run to get LSU on the board, capping a 96-yard scoring drive to cut the deficit to 20-7. The Tigers were efficient on third down, converting 5-of-9 at that point as Daniels was 15-for-20 for 158 yards passing.
On the next possession, Hooker led the Vols down to the LSU 35-yard line, but McGrath’s 50-yard attempt hit the upright and fell no good. Daniels found Jenkins for a 22-yard completion, but on 4th-and-10 at the Tennessee 45-yard line, Daniels was sacked for an eight yard loss to hault any offensive momentum.
McGrath’s 32-yard attempt was good, adding to Tennessee’s lead to make it 23-7.
Hooker and the Tennessee offense marched down the field to open the second half, cashing in with a 14-yard scoring completion to Hyatt. It was a 76-yard drive on nine plays to give the Vols a 30-7 lead with 11:47 remaining in the third quarter.
Small rushed up the middle for a gain of five yards and a touchdown, extending Tennessee’s lead to 37-7 with 2:13 left in the quarter.
Daniels found Boutte for a 5-yard touchdown, his first touchdown catch of the season. The Tigers tried to go for a two-point conversion, but Daniels was sacked for a loss. Tennessee still led LSU 37-13 with 11:32 left in the contest.
Boutte caught his 100th career reception in the game, marking the 26th Tiger in program history to do so.
McGrath converted on a 32-yard field goal to give Tennessee a 40-13 lead.