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TAMUC – Sports

No. 3 Lions earn sixth straight Chennault Cup with 38-7 win over Javelinas

KINGSVILLE – The No. 3 Texas A&M University-Commerce football team scored the first three touchdowns of the game and held Texas A&M University-Kingsville to 216 yards of offense on the way to a 38-7 victory, winning the Chennault Cup for the sixth consecutive year.

The Lions move to 4-0 overall and 2-0 in the Lone Star Conference with the win, while the Javelinas fall to 1-3 overall and 0-2 in the LSC. The Lions are off next week and are next in action on October 7 at Midwestern State.

– Quarterback Luis Perez completed 24-of-32 passes for 319 yards and four touchdowns with no interceptions. He now ranks third in school history in career touchdown passes with 44.
– Cornerback Yusef Sterling-Lowe intercepted two passes, while defensive tackle Pierre Leonard also intercepted a pass. The Lions won the turnover battle, three to one.
– Kicker Kristov Martinez kicked a season-long 44-yard field goal and made all five PAT attempts. He now ranks second in school history in career PATs at 130, only four short of tying the school record.
– Nine different receivers caught passes for the Lions, led by Shawn Hooks with six receptions for 73 yards and a touchdown. Darrion Landry caught four passes for 98 yards and a score.
– D’Arthur Cowan had four catches for 69 yards and two touchdowns.
– Danny Huckaby and Brucks Saathoff tied for the team lead in tackles with five apiece. The Lions had 11 tackles for loss and broke up nine passes.

The Lion defense forced the Javelinas into a three-and-out on the opening drive of the game and promptly put points on the board. Perez went over the top to Landry for a 55-yard touchdown pass on the second play of the drive to go up 7-0 with 13:04 left on the first quarter clock.

A 37-yard Hooks punt return set the Lions up with a short field on their next drive, and they cashed in six plays later on a Perez scoring pass to Cowan to make it 14-0 with 8:26 left in the first.

The Lions methodically worked their way down the field on a drive that wrapped into the second quarter and capped it with a Gabriel Rodriguez 2-yard touchdown rush with 14:00 left in half to make it 21-0.

The Javelinas didn’t have a first down until just over 12 minutes left in the second quarter, but their drive fizzled out. The hosts challenged again late in the quarter, but a Sterling-Lowe interception closed out the half with the Lions ahead 21-0.

A&M-Kingsville recovered a fumble on the Lions’ first drive of the second half and turned the short field into its only points of the game on a 4-yard touchdown pass from Cade Dyal to Nico Brown, cutting the lead to 21-7 with 10:01 left in the third quarter.

The Lions needed only three plays to respond, as a 51-yard catch-and-run from Perez to Cowan put them back on the board with a 28-7 lead with 8:44 left in the third.

The lead pushed to 31-7 with 20 seconds left in the third on Martinez’ season-long 44-yard field goal, capping a nine-play drive.

Sterling-Lowe intercepted his second pass of the night on the second play of the fourth quarter, returning it to the Javelina 20. Two plays later, Perez connected with Hooks for a 20-yard touchdown to put the cap on a sixth straight Chennault Cup win.

On the team’s performance in the win
I was pleased with our effort through four quarters. I thought we played well in the first quarter. We got a little sluggish right before half offensively. But we came back, turned the ball over at the start of the third quarter. We gave them some momentum. They scored, but we did a good job of getting back in the game. I was pleased with our guys who went out there and put out the fire and put the game away. We finished up strong and secured a good victory.

On his team’s fast start in the first quarter
I’ll take all year that. We were able to start fast, and guys made some good plays and put points on the board. The defense played well, and I don’t think they had a first down in the first quarter. The defense had their number early and played well throughout the whole game. It helps when you start fast and get up on them. It is a challenge every week, and it was this week as well. It was a good football team out there, and it is tough to win down here in Kingsville. I’m pleased with a Chennault Cup victory.

On the three turnovers from the defense
Pierre (Leonard) made that interception last year, and I told him, ‘good luck, that was the last one you will get in your career.’ But that sucker found a way to catch another one tonight. Excited about him. We were plus-two in the turnover battle. When you do that, you give yourself a good chance to win. We stress it on both sides of the ball. I’m pleased to come out on the positive aspects there.

Going into the off week and getting ready for Midwestern State in two weeks
I’m looking forward to it. This year is my 18th year of coaching, and this is the first time we have ever had an off week. I don’t know what in the world we are going to do with it. But we are going to back off a little bit, and it will give us two weeks to prepare for Midwestern State, which is a game everybody has had circled on their calendar for a long time. It will give us two good weeks of prep to get ready for those guys and get our legs back underneath us. Hopefully, we will be clicking on all cylinders two weeks from tonight.

On Sunday’s hurricane cleanup in Port Aransas
We are excited to do it. A lot of our players have been affected by this storm. Maybe more so in the Houston and Beaumont area. But everybody knows somebody that it impacted. This weekend is a great opportunity for our program and our kids to get out and help rebuild a devastated area and pay it forward. I know players and coaches are going to work hard tomorrow and have a lot of fun doing it. We will probably be the ones that are the most blessed by paying it forward and helping those people out. It should be a fun day for Lion football.


No. 11 soccer suffers first defeat of the season with 2-1 loss to WT

CANYON– The No. 11 Texas A&M University-Commerce soccer team fell 2-1 to West Texas A&M on Sunday afternoon. The Lions scored a goal in the eighth minute but gave up a goal in the first half and a late goal in the second half.

The loss brings the Lions to 4-1-2 on the season and 1-1-0 in the Lone Star Conference. The Lady Buffs improved to 3-2-2 and 1-0-1 in the LSC.

The Lions will next return home for a Wednesday match against Texas Women. The game will be at 7:00 p.m. at the Lion Soccer Field.

– Sabrina Munguia scored a goal in the eighth minute on an assist from Sophie Haywood. It was Munguia’s second goal of the weekend. She had two shots on goal.
– WT had seven shots on goal while A&M-Commerce had five.
– Delaney Bunselmeyer had two shots on goal. Haywood had one on goal.
– Caitlin Duty made five saves in the match.
– The officials called The Lions offsides four times, one of which nullified a goal in the 25th minute.

The Lions had two shots go wide in the first two minutes of the match as A&M-Commerce controlled the ball early. After a Lion throws in, Haywood found Munguia for a goal in the eighth minute. The Lions also had two offside penalties go against them as the team aggressively attacked WT’s defense.

The Lions continued to dominate possession early on as Bunselmeyer had a shot on goal in the 20th minute. However, this one was saved by the WT keeper, keeping the score at 1-0 in favor of the Lions.

WT finally had a chance for a goal in the 23rd minute. A cross pass eluded the Lion defense and set up a shot opportunity. However, Duty was there to make the save and keep the Lady Buffs off of the scoreboard.

A series of events changed the narrative of the match. In the 25th minute, the Lions looked to have a second goal, and they issued an offside call. WT took the ball and quickly made its way down the field and found the net to tie the match at 1-1 in the 26th minute.

The Lions had an opportunity in the 39th minute for a goal. Munguia found some room to get a shot, but WT’s goalkeeper was able to make the save and keep the match tied. The Lady Buffs had an opportunity late in half for a goal, but Duty came up with a save, and the contest tied at 1-1 at halftime.

The Lions have an early opportunity for a goal in the 49th minute of the match. Bunselmeyer found some room and fired a shot that they saved. The Lions also had a corner kick that headed just wide, and the game remained tied.

WT had a chance that went wide in the 59th minute. Duty saved another attack from the Lady Buffs in the 61st minute, and the match still was tied with 30 minutes to play.

Both teams played tight defense in the late stages of the half as neither team had many chances to get a shot off for the go-ahead goal. The Lions finally found an opportunity in the 80th minute. Haywood had a breakaway, but the goalkeeper left the net and slid in front of the ball, taking it away. WT proceeded to run the other way and found the go-ahead goal in the 81st minute.

The Lions made two late substitutions to get fresh legs on the field to get a tying goal, and even had Duty leave the net to join the attack. However, the WT defense held on and escaped with the win.