UC, Roberts break loose late in win
WEST LIBERTY -- Senior running back Jordan Roberts continued to make his case as one of the best players in the West Virginia Conference on Saturday as Charleston visited West Liberty and came away with a 27-14 win.
The 5-foot-11, 225-pound Roberts, a former Kennedy Award winner at Scott, rumbled for 180 yards on 24 carries and scored on runs of 82 and 7 yards as the Golden Eagles (7-1, 4-1 WVC) kept their hopes for a conference championship alive with the win.
UC took an early 6-0 lead with two first-quarter field goals by Puma Nuredini. The score remained 6-0 until the third quarter, when Roberts broke free for his 82-yard touchdown.
West Liberty (4-4, 3-3 WVC) answered later in the third when Isiah Moody picked up a fumble and returned it 50 yards for a touchdown. Roberts and John Knox scored fourth-quarter touchdowns sandwiched around a 16-yard touchdown run by Moody to put the Hilltoppers away.
Knox and Maurice Leak split time at quarterback for UC. Knox finished 6 of 8 for 80 yards and Leak went 10 of 16 for 71 yards. For West Liberty, Moody finished with 95 rushing yards.
Junior linebacker Matt Kelly of Cincinnati led the UC defense, which limited the Hilltoppers to 176 net yards.
Kelly led the Golden Eagles in total tackles with nine (including five unassisted), recovered a fumble, recorded a sack and broke up a pass.
Charleston forced three turnovers against West Liberty, holding its host to 79 yards on 31 rushing plays and 97 passing yards.
The Golden Eagles close out the regular season with road games at Glenville State and West Virginia Wesleyan, then a home game on Nov. 10 against West Virginia State at University of Charleston Stadium.