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Author Topic: BEARS TAKE DOWN NO. 3 BEARKATS 41-30  (Read 185 times)

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Seminole Indian

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BEARS TAKE DOWN NO. 3 BEARKATS 41-30
« on: October 01, 2017, 07:21:58 am »




CONWAY, Ark. _ A year after losing to Sam Houston State by 36 points, the University of Central Arkansas Bears solved a mystery that no team in the Southland Conference had since 2015 by knocking off the Bearkats 41-30 before a packed house at First Security Field at Estes Stadium on Saturday night.

The No. 11/12 Bears (3-1, 2-0) broke the Bearkats' 12-game SLC winning streak and handed them their first loss of the season (3-1, 1-1). Instead of trailing 38-10 at halftime like it did in 2016, UCA grabbed a 31-17 halftime lead behind three touchdown passes by senior quarterback Hayden Hildebrand and a pair of interceptions by senior cornerback Tre Smith.

Smith, a senior from Anniston, Ala., set the tone on the first possession of the game, intercepting SHSU All-American quarterback Jeremiah Briscoe on the fourth play of the game and returning it 42 yards for a touchdown just 1:21 into the game.

"That was key for us, to jump out fast,' said an excited UCA head coach Steve Campbell said. "They threw a pick six to Tre Smith and confidence and everything else went sky high at that point. That's what you got to do against these guys. You don't want to be playing them from behind. And you can see why, because they're never really out of a game the way they do things offensively. Very explosive.

  "(I'm) very, very proud of the way that we started fast, then built a little bit of a lead, and then kept making plays offensively and defensively and special teams wise to keep us in the game. And to do the things you needed to do. Zero turnovers, we talk about zero turnovers... win the battle of explosives... I don't know what the stats are or anything, but I think we probably had more explosives than they did.'

A year after suffering five turnovers in the loss in Huntsville, Texas, four in the first half alone, the Bears won the turnover battle 2-0 on Saturday.
 
The Bearkats answered Smith's pick six with a quick 6-play, 78-yard drive to tie it at 7-7 at the 11:23 mark of the first quarter. But Hildebrand connnected twice with junior running back Cedric Battle for 25- and 46-yard touchdown passes to stake the Bears to a 21-7 lead early in the second quarter. After an SHSU 36-yard field goal, UCA got a 74-yard hook up from Hildebrand to true freshman Brandon Myers that stretched the lead to 28-10.

That was still not all of the first-half scoring as Briscoe hit Nathan Stewart with a 39-yard touchdown pass and UCA's Matt Cummins added a 17-yard field goal just before halftime for the 31-17 margin.

After Cummins added another field goal early in the third quarter, the Bearkats scored consecutive touchdowns, the final one to cut the deficit to just 34-30 with 12:23 left in the game. But the Bears answered with a quick strike touchdown after a tiring defense rose up and held SHSU deep in Bearkats territory. A fourth-down snap over the head of SHSU punter Cameron Hearn set the Bears up at the SHSU 17 with 9:24 remaining. Two plays later, Hildebrand hit senior Brandon Cox for a 17-yard touchdown in the left side of the end zone and Cummins' point after made it a 41-30 lead.

The teams traded punts on their next two possessions before UCA's defense sacked Briscoe on second down and forced incomplete passes on third and fourth down. UCA got a big 25-yard run for a first down by sophomore running back Carlos Blackman to seal it.

"Everything happens for a reason,' said Campbell. "Last year we were very, very good on defense. And Briscoe made us look like we weren't very good on defense. We took that to heart and (defensive coordinator) Coach (Greg) Stewart and his staff really, really worked hard in the summer of getting a plan for people like them.

"We did a great job of mixing up our coverage. We pride ourselves in stopping the run, and we said, well you know, that's great when you're playing teams that run the football. But when you play these teams that sling it, that throw it 50 times... And Coach Stewart did a great job of mixing up the calls. The corners, Tre Smith was outstanding, Tavion Garrison fought his butt off. Robert Rochelle fought his butt off, I thought our safeties played well. We got pressure.

"I thought our defensive guys did a tremendous job of staying focused, even if they had a play here or a play there, bring it back down and let's start over again. Those guys did a great job of playing one snap at a time.'

UCA, which has won three consecutive games since a season-opening loss at Big 12 Kansas State, rolled up 467 yards of total offense on just 65 plays, compared to 454 yards on 89 plays for SHSU. UCA averaged 7.2 yards per offensive play, including 294 passing yards and 173 rushing. Redshirt freshman Kierre Crossley topped 100 yards rushing for the first time, finishing with 112 on 13 carries (8.6 per carry). Battle had three receptions for 72 yards and two touchdowns and was also key on special teams with four kickoff returns for 84 yards and one punt return for 39.

Hildebrand finished 13 of 25 for 294 yards and a season-high four touchdowns. Briscoe, who threw for 431 yards and seven touchdowns in last year's matchup, was 22 of 50 for 303 yards and three scores and was sacked three times by UCA's Eric Jackson, Chris Chambers and Chris Terrell.

"That was in issue we had last year, and specifically against Sam Houston, we didn't start very fast and we'd have to try to get it going in the second, third, fourth quarter,' said Hildebrand, who beat the Bearkats for the first time as a starting quarterback. "But tonight we came out and were clicking on a lot of cylinders. And the defense put us in some really good positions to be successful.
 
"Sam Houston played a tight man coverage most of the game, and when they do that, you just have to trust your receivers that they're going to win, and throw it up and give them a chance. And for the most part all night, Brandon (Cox), Roman (Gordon), Brandon Myers, everyone made a lot of big plays, and that contributes to a 41-30 win.'

UCA, which moved into sole possession of first place in the SLC standings, plays at Houston Baptist next Saturday at 6 p.m. on Fox Sports Southwest Plus.


http://www.ucasports.com/news/2017/9/30/football-bears-take-down-no-3-bearkats-41-30.aspx
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Seminole Indian

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Re: BEARS TAKE DOWN NO. 3 BEARKATS 41-30
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2017, 07:26:56 am »

Huge win for UCA.
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ImHogginIt

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Re: BEARS TAKE DOWN NO. 3 BEARKATS 41-30
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2017, 12:13:54 pm »

Enjoyed watching it online last night even though it was on that disgusting purple and gray turf  :puke:
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Ben

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Re: BEARS TAKE DOWN NO. 3 BEARKATS 41-30
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2017, 01:24:05 pm »

Possibly the 2nd best football program in the state for the 2nd straight year.
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Seminole Indian

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Re: BEARS TAKE DOWN NO. 3 BEARKATS 41-30
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2017, 02:07:49 pm »

I don't know, maybe the 2nd best "team".

UAPB is getting better.

A-State's team does not start their season until after four games, so it is hard to tell about them.
« Last Edit: October 01, 2017, 02:31:25 pm by Seminole Indian »
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DeltaBoy

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Re: BEARS TAKE DOWN NO. 3 BEARKATS 41-30
« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2017, 08:57:15 am »

Good win for the Bears.
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Wardhog85

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Re: BEARS TAKE DOWN NO. 3 BEARKATS 41-30
« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2017, 10:10:49 am »

I'm finishing up my degree at UCA, and I took my son to the game Saturday. Love the way UCA plays on both sides of the ball. Offensively, they establish the run and use play action to hit the big play. Defensively, they were aggressive and played very physical. Fun game to watch. They also look to be very well coached.
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Seminole Indian

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Re: BEARS TAKE DOWN NO. 3 BEARKATS 41-30
« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2017, 11:02:09 am »

They are very well coached, talented, and play hard.

A-State fans would love to hear their team called "well coached".

You hear comments about their talent, and them playing hard but the "well coached" never seems to be included in the conversation.
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hogfan14

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Re: BEARS TAKE DOWN NO. 3 BEARKATS 41-30
« Reply #8 on: October 03, 2017, 02:43:16 pm »

I'm finishing up my degree at UCA, and I took my son to the game Saturday. Love the way UCA plays on both sides of the ball. Offensively, they establish the run and use play action to hit the big play. Defensively, they were aggressive and played very physical. Fun game to watch. They also look to be very well coached.

I could see Steve Campbell getting interest from someone like Southern Miss in a few years
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