Rams edge out A&M Commerce for homecoming victory
Published: Friday, October 26, 2012
Updated: Thursday, October 25, 2012 13:10
The Rams improve to 4-4 after winning their Homecoming game against Texas A&M-Commerce 17-16 in their Lone Star Conference matchup on Saturday, Oct. 20.
The Rams were down 13-0 at the half, but rallied from defeat by scoring two touchdowns and kicking a 27-yard field goal to put the Lions away.
The Rams’ defense gave up 229 total offensive yards and two touchdowns in the first half.
In the second half, the Rams’ defense gave up three points and 11 total offensive yards while sacking the Lions’ quarterback twice.
When Athletic Director Sean Johnson was told that senior running back Donovan Roberts was the first ASU running back to gain 100 yards rushing in a game this season, he said, “It couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy.”
Roberts dictated the ground game for the Rams with his 104 rushing yards on 14 carries and one catch for eight yards.
With seven seconds left in the fourth quarter and a 17-16 lead, Head Coach Will Wagner opted to let Roberts run one last time rather than try for a field goal.
“If they would’ve blocked it [the field goal] and returned it for a touchdown, we would’ve lost,” Wagner said. “So, I was hoping that Donovan could run out the clock and if they did get the ball, they’d have very little time to score.”
When informed of what he had done, Roberts had a few words to say.
“First of all, I’ve got to give all the credit to my O-line,” Roberts said. “They are the ones that made the holes and got me the yardage. It feels great to help my team get a win. That’s all we really care about is wins. Yards don’t really matter that much, but it feels great to get a win.”
Besides Roberts, sophomore Blake Smith and junior Jermie Calhoun had big days for the Rams.
Calhoun scored the team’s second touchdown on a three-yard run in the third quarter and finished the day with 37 yards rushing.
Smith had 32 yards rushing and made two key plays that set up ASU’s scores.
The first was a must-have third and two play that Smith converted that set up Calhoun’s touchdown carry on the next play.
The second was a fourth and one play that Smith converted that led to the Rams kicking the game-winning field goal in the fourth quarter.
“Everybody else is out here giving it 100 percent for me,” Smith said, “My offensive line, my receivers, quarterback and the defense is going all out. What goes through my head right then is that I have to go all out and do whatever I can to get that one yard, two yards, whatever it is to get that first down.”
Junior quarterback Blake Hamblin completed 16 of 36 passes for 122 yards and threw a three-yard pass to junior wide receiver Dakarai Pecikonis for a touchdown.
While the Rams did win, Wagner said he was not satisfied at beating a 1-5 West Texas A&M-Commerce team by a solo point.
“We’ve got to play to our level,” Wagner said. “We can’t let who we’re playing against dictate the way we want to play. We can’t go up against a great team and play our best game and then come to a team that’s really struggling to find a win and play down to their level. We’ve got to play at an extremely high level every week in this conference to be successful and to be a championship football team.”
The Rams’ next opponent will be Texas A&M University-Kingsville in Kingsville on
Saturday, Oct. 27 at 7 p.m.