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      Red Wolves Fall 48-19 to Troy
      red-wolves-fall-48-19-to-troy

      November 26, 2022

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      JONESBORO, Ark. (11/26/22) – The Arkansas State football team could not overcome a fourth-quarter surge by Troy on Saturday at Centennial Bank Stadium, falling 48-19 to the Trojans in the season finale.

      The Red Wolves (3-9, 1-7 SBC) owned a 19-14 lead entering the final 15 minutes, but the Trojans (10-2, 7-1) scored 34 unanswered to end it. A-State gained 259 yards of total offense, including 221 through the air, while Troy churned out 268 of its 409 total yards on the ground.

      James Blackman completed 20 of 35 passes for 220 yards in his final contest, while AJ Mayer completed his lone pass for a 1-yard touchdown to Reed Tyler in the third quarter.

      Defensively, Melique Straker led all players with 10 tackles while Kivon Bennett tallied two sacks as part of an eight-tackle performance.

      A-State struck first on a 20-yard field goal by Dominic Zvada set up by a 69-yard interception return by Samy Johnson. Johnson’s pick gave the Red Wolves 1st-and-goal on the Troy 2 to halt the Trojans’ opening drive. Troy later took a 7-3 lead when a 1-yard rushing score by Kimani Vidal capped a 14-play drive that took 6 minutes, 24 seconds off the clock, giving the Trojans a 7-3 lead after the opening quarter. Vidal rushed for 208 yards on 33 carries with four scores.

      Zvada tacked on a 21-yard field goal with 6:37 to go in the half to pull A-State within one. The freshman kicker finished 17-of-18 on the year and broke the school record for points by kicking by a freshman. His 81 points moved him past Blake Grupe, who scored 77 as a freshman in 2018, and are the most by a true freshman in Sun Belt Conference history.

      After the teams traded punts, Bennett forced a fumble, which TW Ayers fell on at the Troy 33. Three players later, Blackman scampered 30 yards into the end zone, giving the Red Wolves a 13-7 halftime lead.

      Troy reclaimed at 14-13 lead when quarterback Gunnar Watson linked up with RaJae’ Johnson for a 21-yard strike to cap a 10-play, 94-yard drive with 4:49 to go in the third. Watson completed 9 of 15 passes for 141 yards, while Johnson caught three balls for 101 yards.

      A-State answered on its next drive when Mayer found a sliding Tyler in the back of the end zone, putting the Scarlet and Black back ahead 19-14 with one quarter to go.

      The Trojans opened the fourth quarter with a 7-yard rushing touchdown by Vidal to reclaim a 20-19 lead. Reddy Steward then returned an interception 67 yards to the end zone, ending an A-State drive and pushing Troy’s lead out to 27-19. Vidal scored two more times on 12 and 39-yard rushes, then Damien Taylor pushed across the goal line from three yards out for the final score of the night.

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      Red Wolves Fall 48-19 to Troy. Article may or may not reflect the views of KLEK 102.5 FM or The Voice of Arkansas Minority Advocacy Council

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