ABILENE, Texas – Hardin-Simmons' football team moved to 2-0 on the season with a 16-10 defensive battle against Trinity on Saturday night at Shelton Stadium.
Trinity took the opening kickoff and drove 75 yards in seven plays, highlighted by a couple of outstanding catches by Tommy Lavine to go up 7-0. After that, the Cowboy defense locked in and held the Tigers to 127 yards and three points the rest of the night.
The Cowboys had to punt on their first possession but Blake Johnston intercepted Trinity quarterback Wyatt Messex on the first play of the ensuing possession. The Cowboys ended up with a 25-yard field goal from Jamie Pogue to make it 7-3, with 7:11 to play in the first quarter.
After neither team did much offensively the rest of the half, the Cowboys took the final possession and went 65 yards in 18 plays and Pogue hit a 22-yard field goal at the halftime buzzer to make it 7-6.
The Cowboys came out after halftime and had another long drive that went 65 yards in 12 plays but had to settle for a third Pogue field goal of the night, this time from 27 yards out. It was the first lead of the game for the Cowboys.
The defense then forced another punt by the Tigers and the Cowboys went 40 yards in seven plays and Brennen Wooten hit Kevi Evans on a 9-yard touchdown pass to give HSU a 16-7 lead with 4:56 to play in the third quarter.
It was Trinity's turn for a long drive as the Tigers went 65 yards in 12 plays but settled for a Charlie Sheppard 22-yard field goal to cut the HSU lead to 16-10 on the first play of the fourth quarter.
HSU then went 77 yards in 10 plays to the Trinity 3 but came up short on a fourth-and-one that could have sealed the game.
The defense forced a punt and then the Cowboys punted on the next possession giving the Tigers the ball with 2:49 to play in the game. Kyle Zavala and Hunter Creasey combined for a big sack on third down and HSU sealed the game with a stop on fourth down after a play with a couple of laterals.
It's the second straight year these two teams have played a game that went down to the wire. HSU held the Tigers to 202 yards of offense and the Cowboys had 342 yards of offense on the night.
Jaquan Hemphill had 17 carries for 91 yards for the Cowboys and Brennen Wooten was 22-of-34 for 163 yards and a score and ran 11 times for 49 yards. Matthew Sandoval had seven catches for 67 yards. Messex completed 13-of-26 passes for 160 yards and Lavine had 75 yards on five catches.
Pogue hit three field goals for the second straight week. Jeffrey McCutcheon led the defense with six total tackles and Creasey had 1.5 sacks.
HSU (2-0) returns to ASC action next week at Howard Payne at 1 p.m. and Trinity has an important game on their schedule hosting defending conference champion Berry.
--- www.hsuathletics.com ---