Turnovers costly for Muleriders in Agent Barry Live United Bowl

Photo courtesy SAU Sports Info.

From SAU Sports
Daniel Gallegos, Assistant Director of Athletic for Communications

TEXARKANA, Ark. – Cold, rainy, and windy conditions played a significant factor in the 2016 Agent Barry Live United Bowl between the Texas A&M University-Kingsville Javelinas and the Southern Arkansas University Muleriders as both teams were held well below their season averages in terms of scoring and total offense.

As a result, the outcome of the game figured to come down to field position and turnovers. For much of the game, the field position battle was even, but four turnovers by the Muleriders led to 17 points for the Javelinas, propelling A&M-Kingsville to a 24-17 win on Saturday afternoon at Razorback Stadium.

RECORDS
Texas A&M-Kingsville Javelinas (9-3)
(RV) Southern Arkansas Muleriders (9-3)

HOW IT HAPPENED

  • Weather conditions throughout the game made it difficult for both teams to get in to any offensive rhythm with that statement ringing true the most in the first quarter. Through the opening 15 minutes of play, neither team scored, and there was just 125 yards of total offense combined.
    • The Muleriders had a significant amount of those yards with 114 compared to Kingsville’s 11, but SAU was unable to find the endzone
  • The game’s first points came on SAU’s second drive of the second quarter as junior kicker Bradford Grems connected on a 40-yard field goal with 8:48 left on the clock
  • A&M-Kingsville continued to struggle offensively in the second quarter with just 21 yards of total offense generated, but the Javelinas went into the locker room with a four-point advantage, 7-3, as Devonte Williams had a 58-yard interception return for a touchdown right before the end of the first half.
  • The Javelinas got the ball first to begin the second half, but the SAU defense, who did not allow a single third-down conversion in the game, quickly forced a punt. Two plays into SAU’s ensuing possession, the Muleriders were struck with their third turnover of the game. The Javelinas then made their most productive drive to that point in the game and found the endzone at the end of the drive to take a 14-3 lead.
  • Minutes later, SAU pulled back to within four of the Javelinas, 14-10, as Barrett Renner and Tnner Hudson connected on a 25-yard pass play. The TD catch for Hudson, who recently was named an All-Super Region 3 First-Team Tight End, was his ninth of the season.
  • On Kingsville’s first possession of the fourth quarter, the Javelinas took a 21-10 lead as they hit their biggest offensive play of the game, a 41-yard touchdown pass from Myles Carr to Anthony Autry.
  • Momentum stayed with the Javelinas on the ensuing kickoff as the Muleriders committed their fourth turnover on the return. Forced to defend a short field, the SAU defense held the Javelinas to a field goal, keeping the game within reach, 24-10
  • Following that, the Muleriders cut their deficit in half with just under three minutes left in the game as a productive 12-play, 84-yard drive ended with a 1-yard touchdown plunge by Michael Nunnery.
  • With all three of their timeouts at their disposal, the Muleriders kicked the ball deep and hoped to get the ball back to the offense for a potential game-tying score. The Javelinas, however were able to move the ball just enough and were able to run out the remainder of the game clock to secure the win.

OF NOTE

  • The Muleriders end the season 9-3 overall. Their nine (9) wins are the most in a season since 2003 when the Muleriders finished 9-3 that year.
  • Having already established 10 new records (single-game, single-season, or career) coming into the game, the Muleriders re-wrote six new marks at the conclusion of Saturday’s game. The new records included
    • Completion Percentage (Season)  – Barrett Renner (64.9 | 279-of-430)
    • Pass Attempts (Season) – Barrett Renner (430)
    • Pass Completions (Season – Team) – 296
    • Passing Yards (Season – Team) – 3,534 yards
    • Total Offense (Season – Team) – 5,637 yards
    • Points Scored (Season – Team) – 430
  • Bradford Grems’ 40-yard field goal in the second quarter was his fifth made attempt from 40 yards or longer. Prior to this season, Grems career-long was 32 yards, set in 2014.

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