'Roo football tops Sul Ross
By Austin College
Sep 19, 2021
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Sherman, Texas - The Austin College football team picked up a victory in the team's first home game of the 2021 campaign on Saturday, topping Sul Ross State University 16-7 at Jerry Apple Stadium. The 'Roos are now 1-1 overall and 1-1 in American Southwest Conference play.

The 'Roos more than doubled up Sul Ross in total offense, gaining 341 yards to just 157 for the Lobos in the victory, and held the ball for 35 minutes in the win. Austin College used a balanced attack, with six different players getting at least three carries while seven receivers hauled in passes. Xavier Maxwell paced the 'Roos through the air, catching five passes for 72 yards, while Makkedah Brown had 13 totes for 54 yards. Tyler James connected on 16-of-30 pass attempts for 174 yards and hooked up with Aaron Rideaux for the team's lone touchdown of the game.

Austin College came out strong defensively, with Sul Ross getting negative yardage on their first possession. Nolan Frith got a hand on the punt to give the 'Roos great field position, and six plays later John Aldridge connected on a 31-yard field goal to make it a 3-0 game just under five minutes into the game.

The 'Roos put together another good defensive effort on the next possession for Sul Ross, with Brady Dygert coming away with a sack on 3rd and 2 to force another punt. This time, the 'Roos put together a nine play, 79-yard drive culminating with a 26-yard touchdown strike from James to Rideaux, who finished the game with four catches for 47 yards. That score gave Austin College a 10-0 cushion with 4:19 left in the opening quarter.

The score remained 10-0 until late in the second quarter, when the Lobos got on the board with a three yard touchdown run from Matthew DeLeon with 1:34 on the clock, making it a 10-7 game at halftime. DeLeon's touchdown capped off a seven play, 43-yard drive that was set up by a lost fumble by James.

Neither team could get much going offensive in the second half as the penalties began to pile up on both sides, but Aldridge connected from 19 yards late in the third to make it a 13-7 game heading into the fourth. The 'Roos put together a 10-play, 46-yard drive on their next possession and got another field goal from Aldridge, this time from 22 yards, to make it 16-7 with 7:49 left to play.

That's how things would stand, as Sul Ross gained a total of just three yards on their final two possessions. Mekhi Nicholson led Austin College with six tackles, and Dygert finished with five, including 1.5 sacks.

For Sul Ross, DeLeon led the offense with 71 yards on 16 carries, though just eight of those yards came after halftime TJ Deshields completed 7-of-14 passes for 58 yards, and Jalen Howard paced the Lobos defensively with nine tackles.

Austin College is on the road next week when they head to Belhaven for a 6:00 p.m. kickoff on September 25, and then return home on October 2 to play host to No. 1-ranked Mary Hardin-Baylor.