SPARTANBURG, S.C. (AP) — Jonathan Murphy broke free and sprinted 61 yards in the fourth quarter for a touchdown to seal Kennesaw State’s 28-21 victory over Wofford in the first round of the FCS playoffs on Saturday.
The Owls advance to play at No. 3 seed Weber State (9-3) on Dec. 7.
Murphy, replacing Tommy Bryant who was injured early in the second quarter, rushed for three touchdowns in the final 17 minutes.
Murphy tied the game at 14-14 when he crashed in from the 1 with 1:24 remaining in the third quarter.
Wofford was driving on the following series when Bryson Armstrong forced a fumble that Cincere Mason scooped up, returning it 36 yards to Wofford’s 20. Murphy carried three straight times to get to the 1-yard line where the Owls had a first down. Murphy followed his center for three consecutive plays and came up short before stepping to his left and pushing across for a 21-14 advantage.
Kennesaw State (11-2), representing the Big South, took a 28-14 lead after Murphy’s 61-yard TD sprint with 4:02 remaining.
Murphy had 23 carries for 206 yards. Bryant rushed for 54 yards and a score before he exited in the first quarter.
Blake Morgan rushed for two touchdowns for Wofford (8-4), champions of the Southern Conference.
Wofford’s Jimmy Weirick, replacing the injured Joe Newman, hit T.J. Luther on a 22-yard scoring strike with 1:18 remaining in the game. The ensuing onside kick was recovered by Kennesaw State.