Vanderbilt 12, Kentucky 7
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) _ Steve Yenner kicked a 21-yard field goal with 2:29 left and Vanderbilt’s defense did the rest as the Commodores beat Kentucky 12-7 Saturday for its first Southeastern Conference victory of the season.
Cliff Deese set up the go-ahead field goal when he broke a 48-yard run down the right sideline to the Kentucky 11 after being slowed at the line of scrimmage.
Kentucky (5-4, 4-3 SEC) kept Vanderbilt (3-5, 1-5) out of the end zone for three plays before Yenner put the Commodores ahead 10-7. Pookie Jones tried to rally the Wildcats, but Alan Young sacked him twice, the latter in the end zone for a safety with 1:08 remaining.
The Commodores sacked Jones four times and stifled the Wildcats’ Stack-I offense that averaged 353 yards a game.
Kentucky, one victory short of qualifying for a bowl game, managed only 47 yards passing and 230 overall as freshman tailback Moe Williams rushed for 91 yards on 21 carries. The Commodores finished with 284 yards with four turnovers.
Vanderbilt, which hasn’t scored an offensive touchdown in 12 quarters, went up 7-0 when cornerback Robert Davis intercepted Jones’ pass and returned it 45 yards with 11:09 to go in the second quarter.
Defense kept Kentucky in the game. Adrian Sherwood intercepted a pass by redshirt freshman Ronnie Gordon, making his first start, and returned it 10 yards to the Vanderbilt 30. Williams capped the six-play drive with a 1-yard dive that tied the game with 10:19 left in the third.
The Wildcats had chances to score but couldn’t convert. Juha Leonhoff was short on a 38-yard field goal attempt at the start of the second quarter, and was wide left on a 31-yarder with 8:28 to go in the third.