Posted: Oct 28, 2012 4:22 PM
Updated: Oct 28, 2012 4:28 PM
KINGSVILLE, Texas - Nate Poppell threw for three touchdown passes and rushed for another, while Matt Stoll connected on field goals of 44 and 45 yards as Texas A&M-Kingsville claimed a 34-21 Saturday night at Javelina Stadium.
With their fourth consecutive win of the season, the Javelinas move to 5-4 on the season and 4-3 in the Lone Star Conference. By downing the Rams (4-5, 3-3), Kingsville moves into a third-place tie with Tarleton in the standings but hold the tiebreaker on the strength of last week's win in Stephenville.
Kingsville jumped out to a 3-0 lead by Stoll who converted a season-high 45-yard field goal at the 8:32 mark. After ASU's Blake Smith completed an 8-play, 78-yard drive with an 8-yard run, Stoll kicked a 44-yard field goal to make it a 7-6 contest with 1:15 lead.
The Javelinas regained the lead with just five minutes to go in the first half when Poppell hit Joseph Vela for an 8-yard touchdown reception in the back corner of the end zone.
Angelo's Michael Cochran, starting at quarterback for injured starter Blake Hamblin, led the Rams on a late first half drive. Cochran connected with Dakarai Pecikonis for 15-yard score with 46 seconds left. The touchdown gave the Rams a 14-13 advantage.
Kingsville appeared to be content with running the clock out, however Poppell broke loose for a 20-yard run on first down for his longest run of the season. Jonathan Woodson followed with a 23-yard run to the Ram 19 with a penalty moving it to the 10. Two plays later, Poppell found Woodson wide open from six yards out with 13 seconds left in the half. Stoll's P.A.T. made it a 20-14 game.
Poppell struck again early in the third quarter. After the team's traded possessions to start the third quarter, the senior quarterback capped a 6-play drive with a 35-yard touchdown completion with 8:27 remaining. With the P.A.T., Kingsville led 27-14.
Each team scored a single TD in the final period.
With 5:35 remaining, Poppell capped the Hoggies longest drive of the night with a 4-yard run. The 20-play, 93-yard drive took 5:53 off the clock sealed the win as TAMUK went ahead 34-21.
ASU pulled to within 13 points when Cochran connected with Joey Knight from the eight. Kingsville recovered the on-side kick attempt to end any threat of a comeback by the Rams.
Poppell finished 16-of-28 with no interceptions for 208 yards as TAMUK gained 383 yards. Armstrong and Vela each had four catches for 69 and 53 yards, respectively. Anthony Johnson led the way with 68 yards rushing, while Woodson had 51 yards.
Anthony Forker had a team-high seven tackles, while Jeremy Aguilar had six tackles with an interception. The defense forced a pair of fumbles for three turnovers on the night.
The Hoggies will have a short week to get ready for their next game as they head to Georgia to face Valdosta State at 6:30 Thursday evening as part of the Lone Star Conference-Gulf South Conference 1st-and-10 Challenge.
For more coverage on the Javelinas, follow the Friday Night Fever on Facebook and Twitter.
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