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HomeSportsAustin Peay Governors Football lose to Virginia Tech 42-7

Austin Peay Governors Football lose to Virginia Tech 42-7

APSU Sports: Austin Peay Football

Austin Peay State University GovernorsBlackburg, VA – Logan Thomas threw for 212 yards and two touchdowns to lead No. 15/18 Virginia Tech to a 42-7 victory against resilient Austin Peay State University, Saturday afternoon, in a non-conference game.

Virginia Tech, an Atlantic Coast Conference powerhouse, moves to 2-0 on the season while APSU falls to 0-2. The Govs will open Ohio Valley Conference play next week at Tennessee State.

Austin Peay Football. (Courtesy: Austin Peay Sports Information)
Austin Peay Football. (Courtesy: Austin Peay Sports Information)

Although the final score show the Govs losing by 35 points, head coach Rick Christophel knows that margin was misleading.

“We knew coming in that we had to do everything right,” APSU coach Rick Christophel said. “When you don’t do things right on special teams and you give up some big plays, you are going to have some problems.

“We had some opportunities. I thought we played really, really hard. It was a good ball game-we got a little tired at the end.

“I told the players after the game that I was as proud of them as any team we have had here at Austin Peay because they fought all the way to end.”

Thomas, the All-America candidate, finished 15 of 23 passing. His 30-yard scoring toss to Corey Fuller with 26 seconds left in the first half eased the tension of Hokie fans who were more than a bit restless for much of the first half as APSU forced two Hokie punts, forced a turnover and stopped Virginia Tech on a fourth-and-one deep in APSU territory.

That late first-half score gave Virginia Tech a 21-0 lead going into halftime-the Hokies took advantage of a blocked punt to the second quarter to score their second TD. The Hokies benefitted frrom a Govs turnover midway through the third quarter to break open the game 28-0.

However, the Governors responded with their season’s most impressive drive, going 78 yards on six plays, the bulk coming on Wesley Kitts runs-he accounted for 49 yards, including a 32-yard run. Kitts got the Govs to the 10 and Terrence Oliver scored his career’s first TD, a 10-yard up-the-middle run as APSU cut the deficit to 28-7.

Kitts finished with a career-best 110 yards on 22 carries. In his first two career starts-both against Football Bowl Subdivision schools, Kitts has rushed for more than 100 yards.

But the most improve play came up front defensively. The Govs held Virginia Tech to 187 yards rushing, many coming late in the contest when APSU began to tire.

“We talked after the game last week, where we thought we had to improve the most and that was up front,” Christophel said. “And we did.”

Defensively, Johnathan Shuler led the way with nine stops, including 1.5 for loss while Craig Salley, Earnest Smith and Steven Rich each had nine-Salley and Smith had sacks of Thomas.

Austin Peay Football’s next game is Saturday, September 15th at Tennessee State. The game starts at 1:00pm.

Austin Peay Post Game Notes and Quotes

  • This was Austin Peay’s first meeting not only against Virginia Tech but the Atlantic Coast Conference as well.
  • The contest was a homecoming for APSU assistant Marcus Gildersleeve. The Clarksville native played from 1991-96 at Virginia Tech as a wide receiver and special teams performer.
  • Austin Peay has not defeated a I-A/FBS team since downing Kansas State, 26-22, Sept. 5, 1987.
  • Austin Peay started a revamped offensive line in Week 2. Sophomore Gavin Willisson moved from left guard to left tackle to replace Julian Virgo, who did not make the trip. Sophomore O.C. Brown, a transfer from Southern Miss, started at left guard. It was Willisson’s second offensive line start and Brown’s first.
  • Austin Peay actually outrushed Virginia Tech in the first half 84-51. However, the Hokies held a decisive 154-11 passing-yard advantage.
  • Wesley Kitts, who got off to a slow start, had 57 yards on 15 carries at halftime. He finished with a career-best 110 yards on 22 carries.
  • Wesley Kitts has made two career starts, both against FBS schools. He rushed for more than 100 yards in both games.
  • Earnest Smith had seven stops in the first half, including a sack and a shared tackle for loss.
  • Ben Campbell punted seven times in the first half. However, one was blocked.
  • Austin Peay offensive tackle Gavin Willisson weighs 262. VT All-America quarterback candidate Logan Thomas weighs 260.
  • Terrence Oliver’s 10-yard TD run with 5:45 left in third quarter was his first career rushing TD. It also kept alive APSU streak of 75 games without being shutout.
  • Safety Johnathan Shuler led APSU in tackles with nine. Linebacker Craig Salley, safety Steven Rich and defensive end Smith each had eight stops. Salley and Smith both had sacks of Logan Thomas.
  • This was the second of two straight games broadcast by ESPN3, the online streaming service provided by ESPN.

Austin Peay Head Coach Rick Christophel

“Virginia Tech is a really good football team. They showed how good they are to comeback on four days rest and comeback and play as physical as they did and that is a great tribute to Coach Beamer and his staff to fight like they fight.”

“We knew coming in that we had to do everything right. When you don’t do things right on special teams and you give up some big plays, you’re going to have some problems. We had some opportunities; I just thought we really, really played hard. I told them after the game that I was as proud of them as any team here at Austin Peay because of the way that we fought all the way to end.”

On the play of his defense:

“We talked after the game last week where we thought we really need to improve that defensively up front, and we did. Unfortunately, (end) Malcolm [Goines] is banged up a little bit now, hopefully not bad, and another one or two guys are banged up and we have to get them back.

“We have to make some plays in the secondary. They got to us a little bit. We’re getting better, but we just can’t let guys run free in the secondary. There’s things we have to do in the secondary and go from there. Overall, I thought that our defense played really, really well and we improved on some things from the Western Kentucky game.”

Box Score

Austin Peay vs #15 Virginia Tech
(Sept 8th, 2012 at Blacksburg, VA)

Austin Peay (0-2) vs. Virginia Tech (2-0)

Site: Blacksburg, VA • Stadium: Lane/Worsham Field • Attendance: 65632

Score by Quarters 1 2 3 4 Score
Austin Peay 0 0 7 0 7
Virginia Tech 7 14 14 7 42


1st 02:38 VT Holmes, M 2 yd run (Journell, C kick)
3 plays, 6 yards, TOP 1:00 0 – 7
2nd 05:35 VT Thomas, L 1 yd run (Journell, C kick)
5 plays, 42 yards, TOP 2:20 0 – 14
00:26 VT Fuller, C 30 yd pass from Thomas, L (Journell, C kick)
7 plays, 71 yards, TOP 1:06 0 – 21
3rd 07:51 VT Holmes, M 9 yd run (Journell, C kick)
9 plays, 80 yards, TOP 4:10 0 – 28
05:45 APSU OLIVER, Terrence 10 yd run (STANSELL, Stephen kick)
6 plays, 78 yards, TOP 2:00 7 – 28
02:30 VT Dunn, R 13 yd pass from Thomas, L (Journell, C kick)
8 plays, 72 yards, TOP 3:09 7 – 35
4th 09:30 VT Gregory, T 18 yd run (Journell, C kick)
4 plays, 42 yards, TOP 1:47 7 – 42


Kickoff time: 1:34 PM • End of Game: 4:34 pm • Total elapsed time: 3:00
Referee: Jeff Flanagan • Umpire: Danny Worrell • Linesman: Michael Kelly • Line judge: Hugh Campbell • Back judge: Bill Dolbow • Field judge: Wayne Rundell • Side judge: Watts Key •
Temperature: 76 F • Wind: W 20 MPH • Weather: Mst. Cloudy

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