South Alabama Wins Big Over App State, 47-21

October 5, 2014 · By · Filed Under Football, Sun Belt Conference 

newjagsmallSouth Alabama’s offense posted season-high totals for points and yards behind Brandon Bridge’s career night against Appalachian State.

Bridge completed 19-of-28 attempts for 339 yards and three touchdowns as the Jaguar offense gained 582 yards of total offense, the second-most in school history, as they defeated the Mountaineers 47-21 at Kidd Brewer Stadium.

Bridge’s 339 yards passing ranks as the second-highest individual game total behind Ross Metheny’s 360 yard performance. His 362 yards of total offense also ranks second in the school’s record books, also behind Ross Metheny who holds the record with 365 yards.

Shavarez Smith led the way with six catches for 133 yards, his first 100-yard game since last year’s game against Georgia state, and two touchdowns. Xavier Johnson led the rushing attack with a career best 70 yards on 10 carries. Jay Jones added 67 yards on 12 carries and Terrance Timmons rushed four times for 60 yards and a touchdown.

Terrell Brigham led the defense with eight stops as the Jaguars only allowed 33 yards in the first quarter and 169 yards in the first half. Roman Buchanan, Desmond LaVelle and Demarius Rancifer added seven stops each. Jesse Kelley also had a career day with six stops including a half sack.

The Jags got on the board first when Bridge scored on an eight-yard run. After two Grant McLaurin field goals, Bridge would hit Shavarez Smith for a 67 yard touchdown to take a 20-0 lead midway through the second quarter.

The Mountaineers would get on the board late in the second quarter on a 20 yard pass to Malachi Jones after earlier on the drive Maleki Harris was ejected for targeting.

The Jaguars would come out in the third quarter determined to put the game away without the third-quarter lull they have had in previous games.

Each Jaguar possession in the third quarter would go for touchdowns, each drive taking only six plays. The first possession started at the Jaguar 25 yard line after the opening kickoff was downed for a touchback and ended with a 43 yard touchdown by Bridge to Danny Woodson to extend their lead to 26-7 after McLaurin’s extra point attempt failed.

The second possession started at the Jaguars 38 after the Mountaineer punt and would end with a 14-yard touchdown pass from Brandon Bridge to Shavarez Smith. Aleem Sunanon’s extra point was good this time to put the Jags up 33-7. The third and final possession of the quarter would start at the Jaguar 43 and ended with Terrance Timmons scampering in for a 30 yard touchdown to put the Jags up 40-7 going into the final quarter of play.

USA started substituting heavily to start the fourth quarter. After being forced to punt, the Mountaineers would muff the punt and Xavier Johnson recovered it at the App State 35 yard line to set up the final Jaguar scoring drive. After three consecutive runs by Timmons, Berron Tyson would take his first carry as a Jaguar into the end zone for a 47-14 lead with 10:10 left in the game.

“The defense comes out ready to play every game,” head coach Joey Jones explained. “[Defensive coordinator] Coach [Travis] Pearson and his staff do a great job with them. They just motivate their players; they just get after it. But when they come out and play that well early, it sets the tone and it lets the offense get rolling.”

“I am very proud of this football team,” Jones continued. “Last week we travelled across the country to play Idaho and played a good game. And we came here this week to Appalachian State where they have a lot of tradition. They have great facilities here. It’s a great venue, and our kids played extremely well. They have that look in their eyes right now, and they are understanding what it takes.”

Appalachian State falls to 1-4 overall and 0-2 in conference play in what was their worst home loss since 1984.

South Alabama heads into their off week with a 3-2 record overall and 2-1 record in Sun Belt Conference play. They return to Mobile on Saturday, October 18 when they host Georgia State (1-4, 0-2 SBC) for homecoming. Kickoff time has not yet been determined.

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