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Kentucky 21, Vanderbilt 10

November 15, 1997

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) _ Kentucky beat the Southeastern Conference’s top defense at its own game Saturday.

With Tim Couch having his worst game this season, Kentucky intercepted three passes and recovered two fumbles in beating Vanderbilt 21-10 for its first victory on the road in the league this season.

Kentucky (5-5, 2-5 SEC) led only 14-10 in the third quarter when Jeff Snedeger picked off Damian Allen’s pass at the Wildcats 45. Two possessions later, Lee Wesley forced Jimmy Williams to fumble in Kentucky territory, and Tremayne Martin recovered with 8:12 left.

Derek Horner scored from 30 yards out with 7:27 left, and Vanderbilt (3-6, 0-7) didn’t threaten again in extending its league losing streak to 17.

Couch and the Wildcats had trouble finding a rhythm against a Vandy defense that had been allowing 272 yards a game. The Wildcats didn’t help themselves with 15 penalties for 108 yards and wound up gaining only 234 yards.

Facing a variety of blitzes and coverages, Couch hit his first five passes and then missed the next 12. He wound up 17-of-36 for 168 yards and a touchdown, the first time he hasn’t thrown for more than 200 yards this season. His previous low came against South Carolina when he threw for 294 yards.

Vanderbilt outgained the Wildcats with 262 yards offense, but the Commodores had trouble holding onto the ball. They had six fumbles, recovering four.

The Commodores pulled within 7-3 with a field goal on the opening drive of the third quarter when Craig Yeast returned the kickoff 97 yards for a 14-3 lead. Yeast also caught a 25-yard TD pass from Couch in the second quarter.

Vandy finally scored its fifth touchdown against a league opponent this year when Allen hit Tavarus Hogans with a 55-yard pass.