EMPORIA, Kan., (ESU Athletics) – For the second straight game the defense for #10 Emporia State held their opponent to under 100 yards rushing as they defeated Ft. Hays State 24-16 on Saturday afternoon on Jones Field at Welch Stadium. With the win the Hornets improved to 8-1 on the season and finished the regular season with a 4-1 record in Welch Stadium.
SLOW FIRST HALF
Emporia State went three and out to start the game, but got the ball back on the Tigers first play from scrimmage on a JP Lohrentz interception. The Hornets then went 43 yards on eight plays as Braxton Marstall hit Louis Dailey for a ten yard touchdown.
Ft. Hays State answered with an 11 play drive that went 43 yards that ended with a 37 yard field goal from Brandon Brown.
That would be the end of the scoring in the first half as the two offenses combined for just three drives of over 20 yards the rest of the opening half.
BIG PLAY THIRD
The third quarter started on a similar note as the teams traded punts on the first three possessions. After a Brandon Brown 41 yard punt went out on the Hornet 35 yard line, Marstall found Mitchell Foote over the middle and he went the distance for a 65 yard touchdown to give Emporia State a 14-3 lead with 6:32 left in the third.
ACTION IN THE FOURTH
Ft. Hays State started the scoring in the fourth quarter on a ten yard touchdown run by Shaquille Cooper with 13:22 left in the game. The Tigers elected to go for two but Josh Monteagudo snuffed the pass attempt for a loss to leave Emporia State with a five point lead at 14-9.
The Hornets then went on a five play, 78 yard drive capped by a 38 yard touchdown pass from Marstall to Morris Williams II for a 21-9 lead with 11:27 left. It was Marstall’s third touchdown pass of the day.
Austin Morton hit a 42 yard field goal with 5:13 left to end a 12 play, 65 yard drive and give the Hornets a 24-9 lead.
The Tigers would score with 17 seconds left on a 36 yard touchdown pass from Jacob Mezera to Layne Bieberle for the final score. It was the second time in the last two weeks that the Hornets had given up a touchdown with under 20 seconds left.
DeAndre Glover lead a Hornet defensive effort with a career high three sacks and four tackles for loss among his six total tackles. Josh Monteagudo had a team high nine tackles. Curtis Shorts had five tackles, three of them for a loss. Eddie Vinson had four tackles, a sack, two quarterback hurries and knocked down a pass at the line of scrimmage.
Offensively Braxton Marstall was 16 of 26 for 202 yards with three touchdowns and an interception and added 49 rushing yards on 13 carries. Morris Williams II had five catches for 50 yards and a touchdown while Mitchell Foote had three receptions for 83 yards and a score. Louis Dailey had the other touchdown reception for the Hornets.
Foote moved into fifth in both career receptions and career touchdown passes at Emporia State. He now has 188 catches to pass JJ Richards (187 from 2002-05) and has tied Ray Ray Davis with 27 touchdown grabs.
The Hornets will play their final two regular season games on the road beginning at Missouri Western next Saturday. Kick-off from Craig Field at Spratt Stadium in St. Joseph, Mo. is set for 1:00 p.m. on November 5.