Johnson City, TN – Austin Peay State University (APSU) football junior wide receiver DeAngelo Wilson posted his third 100-yard receiving performance of 2019 to help the Governors build a halftime lead before East Tennessee used a fourth-quarter rally to down the Govs, 20-14, Saturday, at William Green Jr. Stadium.
Austin Peay State University (2-2) scored on its first drive of the contest as Craig led a 5-play, 90-yard drive.
During the opening drive, the Govs unleashed the game’s first big play when on 3rd-and-4 on its own 42, senior quarterback JaVaughn Craig found Wilson down the sideline for a 54-yard completion and a 7-0 lead.
East Tennessee (2-2) would work the ball down the field on the ensuing drive. But got bogged down on the APSU 30-yard line as the Govs defense did not allow a yard on three consecutive plays to force a 48-yard field goal.
Neither team would score again until late in the second quarter with both the Govs and Bucs piecing together drives of 70-plus yards in the final 10 minutes.
ETSU’s scoring drive lasted six minutes and covered 73 yards with Malik McGue dashing in from six yards out to give the hosts a 10-7 lead.
That lead would not survive the Govs next possession. Craig needed just 10 plays and a little more than three minutes to push the Govs 75 yards down the field. Senior running back Kentel Williams finished the drive with a one-yard touchdown dive to give the Govs a 14-10 halftime lead.
The third quarter turned into a defensive battle as neither team could find traction offensively. The two teams combined for just 62 offensive yards – Austin Peay State University mustering six offensive yards while ETSU managed only 56 yards – and seven punts.
ETSU would break the second-half scoring drought midway through the fourth quarter, piecing together a 12-play, 85-yard drive. The Buccaneers converted their second third down of the drive when Quay Holmes scored from two yards out for a 17-14 lead.
ETSU would tack on a 37-yard field goal in the final minutes to set the final score.
Juantarius Bryant led the Govs defense with 13 tackles, including nine solo stops. linebacker Jack McDonald had a first-quarter fumble recovery and a third-quarter interception while also posting five tackles.
Hear It From Mark Hudspeth
On each team scoring on their first drive, then the defenses controlling the game
“Defensively I thought we played really well. I was really proud of our guys, I thought that we had a lot of three and outs, we got off the field, and we kept giving our offense great field position with the two turnover.”
On the offense
“We could not be consistent enough tonight, especially in the second half. We weren’t good enough on first down, and got behind the chains most of the second half and our defense kept us in the game. We just couldn’t find enough answers in the second half offensively, and that was the difference in the game.”
On Devin Stuart pinning ETSU deep
“I thought Devin had a really good game, he came up with some good punts, our coverage unit did a good job. We pinned them deep, which allowed our defense to give us the ball back continually at midfield, and for us to come up empty offensively was disappointing. But well find some answers, we got to get to the drawing board, and it will be a lot to learn that’s for sure.”
“We’ve been wanting to get him the ball from day one. We’ve got a lot of good receivers, and they are all making plays. Tonight, I felt like we were not patient enough in the passing game to take what they give us, we forced some balls where we could’ve taken some shorter routes and kept the chains moving, and that hurt us in the consistency part. We’ve got to make better decisions in the passing game and I thought our pass protection for the first three quarters was pretty good. We’ve got to be more consistent on first down, we have got to be able to run the football, and they stopped us consistently in the run game in the second half.”
On Jacksonville State
“New season, it’s a new season for us. I told our team tonight, sometimes you win, sometimes you learn, and tonight we learned. If we are going to have a championship season, we need to make sure we are doing the details every single day. We are close, but like I told the team, that’s not good enough. Just because we are hitting on some cylinders, you’ve got to hit on all cylinders to be a championship team, and right now we are not there. Hopefully we can get back to work this week, and clean some things up and get there, because we have a great opponent coming to town. It’s going to be a great challenge, we need a great crowd to rally this team, and to be honest with a new season this ought to give our team a little bit of life to realize if we can put some things together, and stop hurting ourselves with foolish penalties, then well have a chance to compete with those guys next Saturday when they come to the The Fort.”
Next Up For APSU Football
Austin Peay returns to Clarksville and opens Ohio Valley Conference play with a two-game homestand. The Govs host nationally-ranked and defending league champion Jacksonville State in a 2:00pm, Saturday contest. Fans can visit LetsGoPeay.com/BuyTickets and use the promo code SELLOUT to purchase discounted tickets for Saturday’s game.