Murfreesboro, TN (SportsNetwork.com) - Logan Kilgore's touchdown pass to Tavarres Jefferson on the final play of the game gave Middle Tennessee a 51-49 win over Marshall on Thursday.
Marshall had taken a 49-45 lead with 2:29 to play on Essray Taliaferro's 2- yard touchdown run and Middle Tennessee started the drive at its own 21.
On 3rd-and-12, Kilgore found Jefferson for 24 yards then went back to Jefferson on the next play for another 14-yard gain. Facing a 3rd-and-4, Kilgore again went to Jefferson for a 5-yard gain to move the sticks.
The Blue Raiders were then down to one play on a 4th-and-5 at the 27, and Kilgore once again looked to his favorite target in Jefferson for an 18-yard strike to move the ball to the 9-yard line with eight seconds left.
After an incomplete pass to Terry Pettis, Middle Tennessee had one shot left with three seconds remaining and Kilgore made it count as he found Jefferson in the end zone for the score and the win.
Kilgore was 22-for-40 passing for 277 yards and four touchdowns with an interception, while Jefferson caught seven passes for 91 yards and the score for the Blue Raiders (4-4, 2-2 C-USA), who snapped a three-game losing streak.
Rakeem Cato was 19-for-35 passing for 235 yards, three touchdowns and an interception for the Thundering Herd (4-3, 2-1), who had won their previous two coming into the game.
Kilgore and Kyle Griswould got together on a 16-yard score on Middle Tennessee's first possession, but Marshall answered on its ensuing touch as Cato found Jazz King for a 39-yard score.
Middle Tennessee took a 14-7 lead later in the first as a blocked punt saw Chris Brown fall on the loose ball in the end zone.
Taliaferro, who finished the game with 134 yards on 24 carries, scored from a yard out early in the second to tie the game, and Marshall took a 21-14 lead with 3:57 to play in the first half on a 6-yard touchdown catch from Gator Hoskins.
Kilgore's 16-yard scoring toss to Christian Collis late in the half sent the game into the break tied at 21-all.
Jordan Parker scored on a 1-yard run on the Blue Raiders' opening possession of the second half, and Kevin Grooms countered with a 1-yard run of his own on Marshall's next touch.
Kilgore took the ball in himself from a yard out and a Cody Clark 37-yard field goal gave the Blue Raiders a 38-28 lead with 3:54 to play in the third, but Cato found Tommy Shuler for a 6-yard score to make it a 38-35 game going to the fourth.
Kilgore's 6-yard score to Corey Carmichael gave Middle Tennessee a 45-35 lead, but touchdown runs of one yard from Grooms and two yards by Taliaferro gave the Thundering Herd a 49-45 advantage.