After falling asleep in the second half, the Sam Houston State Bearkats suffered a 28-20 loss to rival Texas State this weekend.
The loss drops Sam Houston to 5-6 overall, and 3-4 in the conference to finish the season.
The Bearkats led for most of three quarters, until the Texas State defense stiffened and allowed for the offense to overtake Sam Houston.
Trailing 28-20 late in the fourth quarter, Bearkat cornerback Jarvis Pippins picked the ball off deep in Texas State territory. The offense took over and got the ball down to the 10, but from there, they were unable to punch it into the end zone.
“We struggled in the red zone,” running back Chris Poullard said. “Give Texas State credit for their defense in the red zone. They let us get there, but when we did, they buckled down and played some good D. As an offense we have to come together and put the ball in the endzone. We couldn’t capitalize and it showed on the scoreboard.”
Poullard led the offense with 19 carries for 118 yards, along with five catches for 31 yards and a rushing touchdown.
Blake Joseph had another solid day, completing 24 of 36 passes for 240 yards and a touchdown. His performance tallied his season total to 2,440 yards, the sixth highest single season passing performance by a Bearkat.
Jason Madkins was a presence in the passing game once again. Madkins reeled in nine catches for 108 yards, giving him a thousand-yard season. Madkins’ 1,084 receiving yards makes him only the seventh 1000-yard receiver in Sam Houston history.
“We moved the ball,” head coach Todd Whitten said. “We drove the ball down inside the red area, we missed a couple field goals, went out on downs there in the end. We got down inside the red zone, we just didn’t execute.”
The Bearkat defense played well in the finale, holding the Bobcats to 396 yards of total offense. The defense also forced three turnovers, including a fumble and two interceptions.
Sam Houston’s offense played well in the first half, but only managed to score three points in the second half. The last five possessions the Bearkats had resulted in an interception, a missed field goal, a punt, a turnover on downs, and a lost fumble.
The defense contained the Bobcat offense and gave the Bearkats a chance to get back in the game. Pippins’ interception gave Sam Houston life, but the offense failed to execute following a turnover on downs.
“They were challenging me and had a lot of success heading my way,” Pippins said. “I was trying to compete and make it tough for them. I made a play on the ball and the interception happened.”
The Bearkats finished the season one game under .500.
With another exciting young team, Sam Houston will look to make noise in 2010 and earn its first winning season since 2007.