Charleston, S.C. - The Citadel held its annual spring football game Saturday at Johnson Hagood Stadium and several youngsters played starring roles.
Freshman Vinny Miller rushed for a touchdown and caught a 35-yard scoring pass from Aaron Miller, and freshman quarterback Trey White, who redshirted in 2012, rushed 15 times for 85 yards and led a 16-play scoring drive that he ended himself with a one-yard sneak.
White also completed 3-of-5 passes for 44 yards. Aaron Miller threw for 76 yards and added a second touchdown pass when he hooked up with Matt Thompson on a five-yard score.
The Miller-to-Miller connection early in the second half gave the White team a 21-14 lead and proved to be the difference in its eventual 21-20 win. Another freshman, linebacker James Riley, produced the final score for the Blue team when he picked up a fumble and returned it 37 yards for a touchdown.
Riley moved into the starting lineup last season after injuries to Carl Robinson and Rah Muhammad and was named to the Southern Conference All-Freshman team.
Shaunn Middleton led all running backs with 73 rushing yards on only seven carries. Also gaining significant rushing yards were Aaron Miller (7-51), Dalton Trevino (4-41) and Vinny Miller (9-34).
Joining Riley as defensive stars were junior Brandon McCladdie and freshman Dondray Copeland, who both came up with interceptions. Copeland returned his pick 37 yards to set up a touchdown.
Mitchell Jeter, who along with Riley and defensive end Mark Thomas was a member of the SoCon All-Freshman Team last year, was credited with a sack as was first-year player Austin Harrell, who redshirted a year ago.
The Blue team scored the first time two times it had the ball. Middleton had a 40-yard run to set up a one-yard touchdown run by Vinny Miller. White then led a 62-yard drive that included his 14-yard run to convert a long third down and a one-yard plunge into the end zone to give the Blue a 14-0 lead.
Trevino ran 26 yards to the Blue six and Miller hit Thompson for a touchdown on the next play to make it 14-7. Durham brought back his interception to the Blue 27, and Aaron Miller covered 16 of the yards with his feet including the final three to make it 14-14 at halftime.
The Citadel wraps up a month of spring practice with a final session on Tuesday. The Bulldogs open their 2013 regular season on Aug. 31 against Charleston Southern at Johnson Hagood Stadium.