The Sam Houston Bearkats took an early lead and never looked back, taking down the Lamar University Cardinals 41-7 on Saturday to move to 5-0 on the season and gain the programs 150th win in history at Bowers Stadium.
Junior quarterback Eric Schmid made his return to the lineup finishing 13-31 with 159 passing yards and two touchdowns to go with two interceptions, but the story of the game was the running game and the Kats defense.
The game’s first scoring drive came thanks to an interception by freshman defensive back Braiden Clopton that set the Kats up on the Lamar 20. Just a few plays later junior running back Ramon Jefferson was able to get in the endzone for a 5-yard touchdown, his fifth of the season, to give Sam Houston the early 7-0 lead.
The Bearkat defense stifled Lamar again on the next possession with senior defensive lineman Jahari Kay having a 5-yard tackle for loss (TFLs) that pushed the Cardinals behind the sticks. When the Bearkats got the ball on their own 31, it took them only two minutes and 31 seconds to make it a 14-0 ballgame. Schmid found graduate receiver Cody Chrest for a 37-yard completion. A few plays later Schmid found sophomore wide receiver Chandler Harvin for a 9-yard touchdown to end the first quarter.
The Cardinals would miss a 53-yard field goal on the ensuing possession to start the second quarter, and the Bearkats got the ball back ready to answer once again. Schmid took off on a 19-yard scamper, some of his 59 rushing yards on the day. With the Kats in LU territory, the Bearkats took a shot with Chrest streaking down the sideline with a Lamar defender right with him, completing a 34-yard touchdown. A missed extra point would make it 20-0.
Lamar would answer back with a drive of their own to score their only touchdown of the day.
The third quarter was mostly a defensive struggle. The only scoring drive mustered up by either team was a 6-play 82-yard drive by the Bearkats.
Sophomore running back Noah Smith took off on a direct snap for 49-yards and a touchdown, his longest run of his career on a day that also saw him rush for 119, which was another career high for him. This would help him win Western Athletic Conference offensive player of the week.
The Bearkat defense posted a second half shutout and had seven different players register TFLs in the game. Sophomore defensive back Kameryn Alexander also notched his first interception of his career on the second play of the game.
The fourth quarter was much of the same. The Bearkats stopped the Cardinals on a fourth and four at the LU 43 and took over from there. Smith had a 9-yard run, Schmid found Harvin for a 19-yard completion, and then senior running back Kyran Jackson rumbled into the end zone for 4 yards to make it 34-7.
The Kats got the ball back this time with sophomore quarterback Keegan Shoemaker in the game. He handed off to Jackson for runs of 19 and 11 yards. That set the Kats up at the LU 12, where Shoemaker dropped back and found junior wide receiver Tony Williams in the end zone to seal the game 41-7.
Sam Houston will enjoy an off week this upcoming week after having played the last three weeks. The Bearkats will return to Huntsville, Texas Oct. 23 to take on Jacksonville State for their annual homecoming game at Bowers Stadium.