KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- The Vols came into Senior Day riding high after a dominant victory over then No. 12 ranked Kentucky.
That momentum came to screeching halt, however, against Missouri’s (7-4, 3-4 SEC) high powered offense Saturday, as the Tigers routed Tennessee (5-6, 2-5 SEC) 50-17.
Mizzou’s star quarterback Drew Lock passed for an impressive 257 yards with two touchdowns on 21 of 31 passing. Tigers’ running back Larry Roudtree III dominated the ground game with 135 yards rushing and a touchdown.
The tale of the game, however, was Tennessee’s inept offensive play. At the end of the first quarter, the Vols had -17 yards of total offense and an injured starting quarterback after Jarrett Guarantano went to the locker room with an apparent head injury.
Tennessee ended the game with 255 yards of total offense behind backup Keller Chryst, who provided a brief spark in the second quarter. However, two costly interceptions thwarted any momentum Tennessee was able to build.
Missouri started the scoring with first quarter field goals to go up 6-0 while dominating every aspect of the game early. The Vols only lead of the game came early in the second quarter after a 49 yard reception from Chryst to Marquez Callaway set up a six yard touchdown run by Ty Chandler.
The lead was short lived, however, as Mizzou responded with a quick, five play drive capped off by a four yard touchdown run by Tyler Badie. Tennessee was able to cut the lead to three after a chip shot, 21-yard field goal by Brett Cimaglia.
Missouri scored shortly before the half, but a blocked extra point gave the Vols life headed into the locker room for the half down just 19-10.
A devastating interception, however, sucked the life out of Neyland Stadium.
The pick from Chryst was returned 76 yards and set up the Tigers for another score before halftime.
Chryst led the Vols in the first drive of the third quarter to a quick touchdown to cut the score to 26-17.
That’s where the scoring stopped for Tennessee, and took off for Mizzou.
The Tigers rattled off 24 unanswered points that left the Vols with more questions than answers heading into the season finale at Vanderbilt.
Tennessee could also be facing more challenges to its hopes of becoming bowl eligible with Guarantano and wide receiver Marquez Callaway nursing injuries. Both players’ statuses are not yet known.