Hasaan Klugh looks to throw. Photo credit: Chris Crews

The Old Dominion Monarchs didn’t play pretty, but it was enough to keep their slim bowl chances alive. The Monarchs used two field goals by kicker Nick Rice and a solid defensive performance to keep the Niners at bay and win 6-0. Charlotte fell to 1-8 on the year, while ODU improved to 3-6.

49er quarterback Hasaan Klugh, who was hurt late in the fourth quarter, went 7-16 for 62 yards, while backup Brooks Barden went 2-6 for 33 yards. Benny LeMay rushed for 68 yards, receiver Mark Quattlebaum turned in four receptions for 46 yards and Trent Bostick had three catches for 42 yards. Despite tallying 231 yards of total offense, the Niners could never get rolling. Stephen Williams went 15-25 for 153 yards, and Ray Lawry rushed for 98 yards for the home team.

“Heck of a defensive struggle,” Charlotte coach Brad Lambert said. “Old Dominion’s defense played good, ours played good. I thought our defensive line really played well up front… Anthony Butler had a heck of a night. I’m really proud of him. Once Karrington went down, he’s turned up his preparation and done a really nice job.”

The defense was the bright spot for Charlotte, as they turned in another impressive effort. The defense held ODU to just six points, which is the fewest they’ve ever allowed in school history and fewest they’ve allowed from an FBS opponent. Linebacker Anthony Butler, who replaced Karrington King after King’s injury, recorded 14 tackles to lead the Niners. Jeff Gemmell had 13 tackles while Ben DeLuca had 10 to round out the defense. It was Gemmell’s second straight game with double digit tackles, and DeLuca’s third.

Despite the low-scoring affair, the Niners had chances. After a key defensive stop in the final frame, ODU missed a field goal, but Charlotte was unable to generate any points. ODU got the ball back, and Charlotte stopped them again, but committed a costly penalty on fourth down to give ODU a fresh set of downs. Charlotte finally got the ball back, but Barden threw three straight incompletions, and Charlotte was unable to score.

“Our gameplan coming in was to stop the run, and that’s what our main focus was. … It’s been a lot more preparation and knowing that my teammates are counting on me now,” Butler said. “I don’t want to let anybody down.”

Charlotte will return home next week to face Middle Tennessee on Veteran’s Day. The team is eager to crank out a different result from last year, a heartbreaking 38-31 loss on Senior Day. The Niners will have another chance and will look to earn their second win of the season. The game against MTSU will kick-off at 2 p.m. and can be seen on ESPN3.

Zach Timmons, better known as ZT, is a junior at UNC Charlotte. He is an English major and is also minoring in journalism. In his free time, ZT enjoys writing spoken word poetry, drawing, and making beats.