Furman snaps Mercer's winning streak

Mercer's Lee Bennett led the Bears with 17 tackles in their loss to Furman on Saturday. (Mason Prince, WGXA)

GREENVILLE, S.C. -- The Mercer Bears entered Saturday's contest against Furman riding a three-game winning streak. The streak is over. Furman handed Mercer a 28-21 loss at Paladin Stadium dropping Mercer to 4-4 overall and 3-3 in Southern Conference play.

Mercer jumped out to a 7-0 lead after one quarter thanks to a one-yard touchdown run by Tee Mitchell. Furman rallied with 14 unanswered points to go into halftime on top 14-7. The two teams traded touchdowns in the third quarter to enter the fourth tied 21-21. The Paladins scored with just under four minutes left in the fourth to take a 28-21 lead.

With 1:47 left in the game, the Bears offense took the field after a defensive stop with 85 yards to go to tie the game with no timeouts. The Bears went 59 yards in nine plays to get to the Furman 15-yard line with under 10 seconds remaining. Kaelan Riley threw a pass in the end zone that was intercepted with three seconds left to seal the Furman victory.

Riley finished the day 26-for-34 with 289 yards, one touchdown and one interception. Chandler Curtis led the way in receiving with 11 catches for 112 yards while Tee Mitchell led on the ground with 93 yards on 12 carries. Lee Bennett led the Mercer defense with 17 tackles.

Penalties might have been what hurt Mercer the most, 10 of them for 93 yards compared to Furman's three flags for 35 yards.

Mercer has a bye week next week. They will host Samford on November 4 at Five Star Stadium.

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