Furman Vs. Wofford Highlights / Postgame Interviews
GREENVILLE, S.C. -- P.J. Blazejowski set a Furman single game record by connecting on 15-of-15 pass attempts for 305 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Paladins to a 31-14 victory over Wofford in Southern Conference football action Saturday afternoon at Paladin Stadium.
The win snapped an eight-game losing streak by Furman (3-8, 2-4 SoCon) and marked the third victory in the last four games against Wofford (5-5, 3-3 SoCon), the Paladins' oldest football rival.
Blazejowski, a true freshman who threw for 307 yards last week against The Citadel, became only the second quarterback in Furman history to post back-to-back 300-yard passing performances, first accomplished by Cleve Hightower in 1969. The 15 consecutive completions topped the previous game standard of 12 held by David Henderson (vs. Marshall, 1978) and Billy Napier (vs. Georgia Southern, 2001).
The St. Augustine, Fla., native's two aerial strikes bracketed the game's scoring. He connected with Jordan Snellings on a screen pass that went for 61 yards to give Furman a 7-0 lead, and wrapped up his day with a 59-yard hook-up with Andrej Suttles with just five minutes remaining.
Blazejowski's connection with Snellings, which came on third-and-three play at the Furman 39, gave the Paladins the early advantage, and Jon Croft Hollingswoth's 44-yard field goal made it 10-0 late in the first quarter.
Wofford responded with a pair of Lorenzo Long scoring plunges to take a 14-10 lead, the second of which was set up by a Terrance Morris sack of Blazejowski, whose fumble on the play was recovered by the Steven Cornellier at the Furman 22.
The Paladins' took advantage of a Wofford fumble to regain the lead. Safety Nick Miller's recovery at the Terrier 24 appeared headed for a wasted opportunity after two sacks and a penalty pushed Furman back to the Terrier 42, but on third-and-28 Blazejowski connected again with Snellings on a flanker screen for 32 yards and a first down at the Wofford 10. Three plays later Blazejowski took a sneak over the goal line to give Furman a 17-14 halftime advantage.
Blazejowski continued his solid work on the opening drive of the season half, directing the Paladins on a nine-play, 75-yard scoring drive. His 30-yard hook-up with Suttles on a third-and-two play from the Wofford 45, gave Furman a first down at the Terrier 15, and four straight runs by Hank McCloud covered the rest of the way to make it a 24-14.
Wofford's bid to respond on its next two possessions ended with a fumble by quarterback Michael Weimer that was recovered by Brian Ross at the Furman 36 and with an incompletion on a fourth-and-seven pass at the Furman 38.
Following an exchange of punts, Furman put the game out of reach with its last pass of the game. Faced with third-and-eight from his own 41, Blazejowski rolled to his left and lofted a pass over the Wofford coverage to Suttles, who collected the ball along the sideline and outraced the defense to complete a 59-yard scoring play with 4:55 to go.
Furman finished the game with 381-300 advantage in total offense. The Paladin running game, which was limited to negative six yards in the first half, rebounded with an effective second half to finish with 76 yards, including 59 yards on 15 carries by McCloud.
Blazejowski's prime passing targets were Snellings, who had four receptions for 118 yards and a score, and Suttles, who finished with three catches for 103 yards and a touchdown.
Wofford, which entered the contest ranked fifth in rushing in FCS, amassed 281 yards on the ground, including a game high 130 yards on 15 carries by Ray Smith. The Terriers, however, threw for only 19 yards, connecting on 2-of-8 passes.
Gary Wilkins paced Furman's defense with a game high nine tackles, including four for-loss, two sacks, and a forced fumble.
Kevin Thomas and Terrance Morris had eight tackles apiece to lead Wofford, which posted four sacks in the contest.
Furman's Nick Miller's second quarter fumble recovery that set up the Paladins' go-ahead touchdown was his third recovery in the last two games.
Blazejowski, who on Monday was named SoCon Freshman of the Week, has completed 35 of his last 44 pass attempts for 612 yards and five touchdowns (no interceptions) and accounted for seven touchdown responsibilities in the last two games.
Furman closes out its 2014 season next Saturday when it entertains SoCon regular season champion Chattanooga in a 3:30 p.m. game at Paladin Stadium.
Hunter Reid, Furman Sports Information