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Football: Texas A&M 45, UL 21 - Buckley's Breakdown + Gridiron Alumni Reunion Weekend
Tim Buckley, The Advertiser, Sept. 17, 2017
Athletic Network Footnote by Dr. Ed Dugas:
Attention Former Football Players, Coaches, Managers, Athletic Trainers, etc. Click here for Gridiron Alumni Reunion Weekend.
COLLEGE STATION, Texas — UL went toe-to-toe with Texas A&M for one half, leading by a touchdown at the break before getting blanked in the second half and falling 45-21 at Kyle Field.
The Ragin’ Cajuns answered Kellen Mond’s 1-yard touchdown pass to Christian Kirk in the first quarter with a 3-yard Trey Ragas run early in the second quarter, then — after Mond’s 24-yard TD pass to Jhamon Ausbon — tied it again at 14-14 with Jordan Davis’ 8-yard scoring pass to Ryheem Malone and the PAT that followed.
The Cajuns took a 21-14 lead behind Davis’ 1-yard TD pass to Jordan Wright with seven seconds to go before the half.
But it was Aggies all the way in the second half as Texas A&M scored 31 unanswered points on a Cajun club that was both injured at some key spots on offense and seemingly worn down all the way around.
The Cajuns made a trick play work as Davis passed to running back Darius Hoggins, who then passed back to Davis for a 19-yard gain.
Related: UL running back Hoggins loses teeth, breaks jaw in cellphone fall
With the game tied 21-21 after a 5-yard TD run by Mond, the Cajuns went three-and-out and Mond threw a 12-yard touchdown pass to Camron Buckley nine plays later.
It was still a 10-point game at 31-21, but that changed when Tyrel Dodson picked off a Davis pass intended for running back Elijah Mitchell and took it back 40 yards for a pick-six on the first play of the fourth quarter that helped put it out of reach for the Cajuns.
BY THE NUMBERS
Ragas ran 14 times for 93 yards and one touchdown. … Damar’ren Mitchell and Kevon Perry each had a team-high nine tackles for the Cajuns. … Texas A&M had 27 first downs to UL’s 17 and the Aggies had 480 yards of total offense compared to 309 for the Cajuns. … Attendance generously was announced at 98,412 of 102,733-capacity Kyle Field. That’s the largest announced crowd to ever watch the Cajuns play. … Temperature at kickoff was 81 degrees.
True freshman Chase Rogers made a second straight start for UL at tight end. … Ryheem Malone made a second straight start at slot receiver over Michael Jacquet, who started UL's opener. … Rover safety Tracy Walker had his first interception of the season. … UL cornerback Simeon Thomas, playing for the first time this season after being suspended by the NCAA two games for academic reasons, broke up three passes. … Cajun captains were Davis, Malone, Damar’ren Mitchell and Robert Hunt. … Carrying flags for the Cajuns on Saturday: Chris Collins (American), Adrian Goodacre (Louisiana), Jacquet (Texas), Deuce Wallace (Acadiana). … Terik Miller carried the UL defense’s “takeaway hammer,” and Ashton Johnson was the Cajuns’ “strongest link.”
With Stevie Artigue limited by a quad strain, backup kicker Calvin Linden made UL’s first PAT and handled the Cajuns’ four kickoffs. But Artigue, who didn’t kick in practice all week, made UL’s final two PATs.
Cajuns kicker injury: 'It's sort of been tough on him'
Usual starting free safety Travis Crawford (bruised lower left leg) did not play. … Usual starting nose tackle Taboris Lee didn’t start and was limited because of a left forearm injury. … Hoggins played for the first time in 2017 after missing the season’s first two games due to a broken jaw. … Davis finished despite a knee injury. … Malone left early with a shoulder injury, and fellow receiver Keenan Barnes was hobbling in the second half with a knee injury.
HE SAID IT
“I thought our guys were ready, and I thought they were excited to compete coming to a venue like (Kyle Field). … I thought they played their hearts out, especially in the first half and first three quarters against a very good football team on the road.” — UL coach Mark Hudspeth
UL: 1-2. Texas A&M: 2-1.
UL opens Sun Belt Conference play at home against UL Monroe at 4 p.m. Saturday. Texas A&M opens SEC play at 11 a.m. Saturday against Arkansas in Arlington, Texas.
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