By Andrew Zimmel
The first game of Sun Belt Conference ended with the Bobcats coming one yard short of shocking the nation. With less than two minutes left in the game, the Bobcats drove 98 yards, coming one yard short of having a chance to tie the ballgame, falling 20-13 to the Appalachian State Mountaineers.
In the Sun Belt home opener, the Bobcats were able to prove that they are not the team that had a 2-10 record last season, but a team that can compete with some of the best in the nation and conference. In the first quarter, the Bobcats came out swinging with a 49 yards passing touchdown from Senior Quarterback Damian Williams to Junior Wide Receiver Mason Hays. The Bobcats were able to tack on three more points off the foot of Kicker James Sherman. With less than a minute left in the first half, the Mountaineers were able to get on the board with a 12 play 74 yard drive that was capped off by a touchdown pass from Taylor Lamb.
In the second half, the Mountaineers outscored the Bobcats 13-3 with a Terrence Upshaw touchdown in the third quarter that put Appalachian State out of the Bobcats reach. In the last quarter, with a little over a minute left in the game, A.J. Krawczyk was able to force a fumble by Lamb with Frankie Griffin for the recovery. After the play being reviewed whether or not the ball was recovered in the end zone, making it a touch back, or if the Bobcats would start their drive from their own one yard line. After driving 92 yards with less than 10 seconds left in the game, Williams was able to complete a pass to Wide Receiver Elijah King for a six yard game. However, the Bobcats were unable to reach and break the plan for the touchdown, ending the game with the Bobcats driving all the way down the field with no touchdown.
The impactful and impressive group on the football field Saturday night was by far the Texas State defense, which was the main reason the Bobcats were able to hang around with the pre-season Sun Belt Conference favorites. The defense was able to hold Upshaw, Lamb and the Appalachian State offense, one of the most deadly the conference, to only 167 yards passing and 116 yards rushing. Sophomore outside linebacker Hal Vinson, playing for the injured Easy Anyama, had 10 tackles leading all Bobcats, followed closely by A.J. Krawczyk and Bryan London. Senior QB Damian Williams had a solid game, his first in the Maroon and Gold, throwing 23 for 35 260 a Touchdown and an Interception. The Bobcats also out rushed thier opponet, gaining 164 yards on the ground.
The Bobcats play I-35 rival, the University of Texas at San Antonio, next weekend in San Marcos. Kickoff is scheduled for 6:30 p.m.!
Featured image by Justin Manor.