Posted: Nov 25, 2012 6:50 PM
Updated: Nov 25, 2012 11:03 PM
TOPEKA, Kan. - The Texas A&M-Kingsville football gained 559 yards of total offense and scored a season-high 38 points but it wasn't enough to overcome five turnovers in a 45-38 loss to No. 24 Emporia State in the 2012 Kanza Bowl at Hummer Sports Park.
Bryan Ehrlich threw for 418 yards on 36-of-65 receiving for the second-highest single-season total in Javelina history. However, the senior transfer, who started in place of an ailing Nate Poppell, tossed four interceptions.
Ehrlich connected 10 times with junior Robert Armstrong, who finished with 109 yards receiving. With the 10 catches Armstrong finishes the season with a school-record 67. The prior mark was 66 by Jareko Taylor in 2008.
Kingsville, who finish the season 6-6, also outrushed the Hornets 141-3. Anthony Johnson, who caught a TD pass as well, had 13 catches for 72 yards an a touchdown finishing with 96 yards of total offense. Randall Toney had 12 carries for 64 yards.
Defensively, the Javelinas made Emporia State (10-2) one dimensional. The Hornets finished with 313 yards of offense with 310 coming through the air from Tyler Eckenrode. The Hornets all-time leading passer was 25-of-32 for 303 yards and four touchdowns.
Jeremy Aguilar led the Javelina defense in his final game with nine tackles, a sack, and Kanza Bowl record 4.5 tackles for loss.
After a scoreless first quarter, Johnson put Kingsville on the board with a 31 yard run at 13:19 mark.
Emporia State answered with 21 straight points. Eckenrode hit Adam Schlitz for a 23-yard score with just under nine minutes left in the half. The score was set up by a Kingsville fumble.
The Hornets took the lead on their next possession after the Javelinas fake punt was unsuccessful at the Hoggies 28. Ray Ray Davis connected with Schlitz out of the Wildcat for a 14-7 lead.
Kingsville had an opportunity to tie the game at end of the half driving to the Emporia nine, but Ehrlich was intercepted in the end zone.
After the Javelinas punted to start the second half, Eckenrode hit Shjuan Richardson for a 77-yard scoring strike. The tally made it 21-7 just 1:59 into the second half.
Ehrlich answered hitting Jake Willingham for a 31-yard score after a 30-yard dash by Toney to make it 21-14.
After a 76-yard return on the kickoff by ESU's Jeff Richards, Eckenrode hit Davis from four yards out following a Kingsville pass interference. The quick score made it 28-14.
Toney then got into the scoring act for Kingsville, which refused to go away. One play after a 50-yard catch to the one by Christian Tayler, who had 97 yards receiving, Toney carried the ball in for a score. Matt Stoll's kick made it 28-21 at the 8:12 mark of the third.
After the Kingsville defense forced a punt, the Javelinas drove to tie the game. Ehrlich hit Taylor for a 22-yard gain to the 15. The drive would stall and the Hoggies added a 31-yard field goal by Matt Stoll to make it 28-24.
The Javelina defense forced a four-and-out on the ensuing drive to give the ball back to the offense. Three plays later, Ehrlich was intercepted by Chris Poston at the Kingsville 33.
ESU capitalized on the turnover and a pair of penalties in the red zone to take a 35-24 lead with 12:24 left. Schlitz pulled in his third TD reception for the score.
After the Javelina offense failed to convert a fourth down, the defense forced a four-and-out to give the ball back. Kingsville drove 58 yards for a score to make it 35-31 with 4:37 left. After running three yards on fourth-and-goal, Ehrich hit Johnson for a 6-yard score.
The Hornets struck two plays later with a 75-yard strike from Eckenrode to Richardson and a 42-31 lead 14 seconds later.
After Ehrlich's fourth INT, the Hornets sealed the win on a 44-yard field goal by Derek Jonas with three minutes to go.
Kingsville refused to give in pulling back to within seven on a 38-yard pass from Ehrlich to Griggs. The strike made it 45-38 with 1:34 left.
The on-side attempt by Stoll was nearly recovered by the Javelinas, but ESU gained possession at the 47.
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