CHARLESTON, Ill. -- Dontey Gay ran for three touchdowns, Tre Lamb passed for 240 yards and another score, and Tennessee Tech beat Eastern Illinois 31-20 Saturday in both teams' Ohio Valley Conference opener.
Gay scored on short runs in each of the first three quarters as the Golden Eagles (2-1) ran off 31 unanswered points. He finished with 96 yards rushing on 24 carries.
After a first-quarter 28-yard touchdown pass from Jimmy Garoppolo to Chris Wright for the game's first score, Eastern Illinois (1-2) sputtered offensively until the fourth. Garoppolo found Wright for another touchdown, this one from 21 yards out, then hit Sam Hendricks with a 4-yarder to pull Eastern Illinois within 31-20. But the Panthers were stopped on their next possession and Tennessee Tech ran out the clock.
The Golden Eagles' defense held the Panthers to just minus-6 net rushing yards. Garoppolo threw for 301 yards but was intercepted three times.