MURFREESBORO, Tenn. — Brent Stockstill threw three touchdown passes in his return from injury and the Middle Tennessee defense allowed just 137 total yards to help the Blue Raiders beat UTEP 30-3 Saturday night.
Stockstill, who hadn’t played since suffering a cracked sternum in a Week 2 loss to Syracuse, was 13-of-30 passing for 190 yards with one interception. Tavares Thomas had nine carries for 68 yards and a touchdown and Ty Lee had six receptions for 80 yards and a score for Middle Tennessee (4-5, 2-3 Conference USA).
Canon Rooker hit a career-long 51-yard field goal to open the scoring and, two plays after Ruben Garnett’s 8-yard run on fourth-and-3 from near midfield, Stockstill hit Lee for a 25-yard touchdown to make it 10-0 going in to the second quarter.
Jimmy Marshall’s 5-yard scoring reception capped an 11-play, 82-yard drive — including a 27-yard pass from Stockstill to Shane Tucker on fourth-and -5 — to make it 17-0 at halftime. UTEP (0-9, 0-5) went three-and-out on the opening possession of the second half and Thomas scored on a 2-yard run to make it 24-0 early in the third quarter.
The Miners converted just 2-of-16 third downs and were held to a season-low 48 yards passing.