The Lindenwood football team (4-2, 0-1 OVC) won 37-34 in a double-overtime thriller over Eastern Illinois (2-4, 1-0 OVC) on Saturday in Charleston, Ill.
The Lions started the game slow on the offensive side of the ball, as Eastern Illinois took a 7-0 lead after the first 15 minutes of play. Lindenwood jumped on the board early in the second quarter, after Justin Williams scored from five yards out.
Halfway through the fourth quarter, the Panthers forced a fumble and took it to the end zone for the 24-17 lead. The Lions continued to battle, as Cade Brister capped off a late drive with a one-yard touchdown run to tie the game at 24-24.
After 60 minutes of play, the game remained tied and went to overtime. Lindenwood had the ball first to start the extra period, and Brister connected with Payton Rose on a back-shoulder throw to make it a seven-point lead for the Lions. The Panthers quickly responded, sending the game into a second overtime. Eastern Illinois had to settle for a field goal after a strong defensive stand by Lindenwood. After leaving the field earlier in the fourth quarter, Kobe Smith came back into the game to make the game-winning catch to give the Lions a wild 37-34 win on the road.
Saturday’s overtime game was the first for Lindenwood since joining the NCAA Division I ranks, and its first since the 2019 overtime win over Missouri S&T. Brister threw for 302 yards and three touchdowns in the game, as he also ran for 79 yards and a score on the ground, as he continues to shine this season.