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Austin Peay Governors seek to snap two-game losing streak at Southeast Missouri

 

APSU Sports Information: APSU Football

Austin Peay State University GovernorsCape Girardeau, MO – Two Ohio Valley Conference teams attempting to regain their footing will battle each other 1:00pm, Saturday, when Austin Peay and Southeast Missouri hook up in the Redhawks homecoming contest in Houck Stadium.

Both APSU and SEMO are entering the contest amidst two-game OVC losing streaks. And both have been bludgeoned defensively, the Governors permitting 95 points combined in loss to UT Martin and Jacksonville State while Southeast Missouri has permitted 96 points in road defeats at Tennessee State and Eastern Kentucky.

APSU Football.

APSU Football.

The Redhawks, 1-5 overall are 1-3 in the OVC and have little chance of repeating as league champions after going 9-3 overall and 7-1 in the OVC during 2010.

It would be easy to point to a defense that has allowed no fewer than 30 points in a game this season. But a week ago against Eastern Kentucky it was six turnovers, one being returned for a score, that undermined the defensive effort.

Jake RyanThe Governors can sympathize with the Redhawks. Austin Peay also had six turnovers, three being returned for scores against Jacksonville State in last week’s 44-14 loss.

As a result, this week’s game essentially will come down to which team can do best in cutting down their respective turnovers.

Offensively, Southeast Missouri is led by senior quarterback Matt Scheible, arguably the Redhawks’ MVP last year in their title run. Scheible currently stands with 6,155 yards of total offense, 2,054 yards rushing and 4,101 yards passing. He is the first quarterback in OVC history to achieve 2,000 rushing and 4,000 passing yards in a career. He had 249 yards in total offense against Eastern Kentucky last week.

Ryan WhiteHe played last week without his favorite receiver D.J. Foster, who was suspended, after the Redhawks lost top running back Levi Terrell to a broken collarbone the previous week.

The fact the SEMO defense has struggled is somewhat a mystery. Linebacker Blake Peiffer, the son of former NFL offensive lineman Dan Peiffer, is the OVC’s top tackler.  Meanwhile, safety Tylor Brock was a preseason All-American while fellow safety Bryan Blanfort is one of the team’s top defenders.

Austin Peay, meanwhile, had zero turnovers against Tennessee State in its win against the Tigers three weeks ago. They have eight turnovers over the last two games, leading directly to or shortening the field for opponents, putting even more pressure on a defense that stressed during the season’s first half. Opponents, in fact, have scored 52 combined points in the second quarter of the last two games.

Devin StarkAs a result, the Govs offense has been placed in catch-up mode, fostering situations where even more turnovers have occurred. After the Govs cut their deficit to 31-14 last week, JSU forced two interceptions in the closing quarter that pushed out the final deficit.

This is the second of three homecomings for the Govs in October. They were UT Martin’s homecoming opponent two weeks ago and will hold their own homecoming next weekend.

The Govs and SEMO have played four times since APSU rejoined the OVC in 2007. The visiting team has won twice in the other’s stadium.


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