Carlos Saldana hit an extra point to put Clark Atlanta in overtime and then won the game with a 44-yard field goal to give CAU a 32-29 win over Mississippi College Thursday night.
Mississippi College had erased a 22-14 halftime deficit midway through the third quarter with an 18-yard touchdown run, and then caught a pass to convert a two-point conversion and tie the game 22-22.
Jobe then added a 12-yard TD run with 2:03 remaining to put the Choctaws ahead.
But that’s when Clark Atlanta quarterback Johnathan McCrary went to work.
McCrary drove the Panthers downfield, primarily on the strength of a 29-yard pass to Yeshua Muata that put Clark Atlanta (1-0) in prime position with 1:12 remaining.
McCrary then hit Jonathan Sanders and then Deandre Jackson to get the ball to the Choctaws 6. A Mississippi College pass interference call took the ball to the two. It took McCrary two runs up the middle, the final one with time running out, to tie the game at 29.
Saldana then calmly split the uprights to put the game into overtime.
Mississippi College (0-1) got the ball in the first, picking up one first down and ultimately setting up Greg Nickles for a 43-yard field goal attempt that fell short.
CAU had to start on the 40-yard line instead of the 25 after an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty, but Jujuan Lankford ran it to the 29. The CAU drive stalled shortly thereafter, but Saldana then lined up at the 44 and calmly kicked it through for the game-winner.
McCrary, the SIAC’s preseason Offensive Player of the Year, finished with 253 yards and two touchdowns through the air and 48 yards and two touchdowns on the ground to lead the Panthers.
Kenneth Morgan led CAU with 11 tackles, nine of them unassisted. Keith Harrison added nine stops while Terrence Kelley, who had three key tackles in overtime, had seven tackles and a sack.
Clark Atlanta opens up Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play on Sept. 9 when they host Central State.
Courtesy: CAU Athletics