Maroon Edges Gold 71-70 In Texas State’s Spring Game

While it featured a different format from the typical spring game, the Texas State annual Maroon-Gold Spring Game was decided on a last second play for the second consecutive year Saturday afternoon at Bobcat Stadium.


“Some called it a spring game, but it was really practice 12,” Texas State head coach Everett Withers said. “We had a chance to go out there and try to get better. We ran (108 offensive plays) today and two offensive linemen played every one of them. We have got to build up offensive line that we don’t have to do that and we have to (improve) on both lines.”


The Bobcats have been practicing with just eight offensive linemen this spring because of injuries and four players departing between semesters. That forced Texas State to play Saturday’s game more like a situational scrimmage than a true game as the offensive players made up the Maroon team and the Gold team consisted of the defensive players.


The day began with both teams battling in a circle drill that featured players going one-on-one against another player and trying to force them on the ground. The Gold team won three of the five match-ups.


The rest of the day featured the two teams squaring off in six more team segments using the same scoring system as Texas State’s four previous winner-loser practices this spring. The offense received points for touchdowns, first downs and crossing the 50-yard line.  The defense earned points when they forced a turnover, forced a three and out and didn’t allow the offense to cross the 50-yard line.


The Maroon team took its first lead when the offense was able to get four first downs from their own three-yard line to take a 14-12 advantage.


The Gold team fought back with the defense forcing 20 three-and-outs and a turnover on downs on the next 27 possessions to take a commanding 46-24 lead.


The Maroon team answered with a pair of first downs before Connor White hit Elijah King for a 40-yard pass to give the offense its first touchdown of the day.


After the two teams battled back and forth during the next segment, the Maroon team scored a pair of touchdowns in the sixth segment when Tyler Jones hit Inoke Langi for an 18-yard touchdown pass and threw a 19-yard TD pass to Demun Mercer.


The Maroon team scored three more touchdowns in the final short-yardage segment in the red zone. First, Jones threaded the needle for a three-yard TD pass to Mercer and L.G. Williams completed four-yard TD pass to Eric Luna.


Stedman Mayberry scored the final points of the day when he ran three yards for a touchdown and gave the Maroon team a 71-70 victory on the final play.


Overall, the defense finished the day with 19 tackles for loss and 8.5 sacks, while holding the offense to just 11 of 47 on third-down conversions.


“I thought the defense came out and tried to compete today,” Withers said. “I thought Dallas McClarty had a good day and did some good things. I thought that Gabe Lloyd had a good day at linebacker. Tyler Jones did as well as he could do without any protection.”


Jones ended the day completing 9 of 20 passes for 90 yards and his three touchdowns without an interception, but was sacked six times.


McClarty had seven tackles, including a four-yard sack, while Lloyd was second on the team with 12 tackles and added a tackle for loss.


Bryon London led the Bobcats with 13 tackles, including tying Lloyd with 10 solo stops, and three tackles for loss. Frankie Griffin added 10 tackles, three sacks and a team-high five tackles for loss.


Following Saturday’s contest, the Bobcats will close out spring practice with three straight workouts on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.


“We want to continue getting better on the offensive and defensive lines,” Withers said. “We didn’t do much on special teams today because we want to use next week to get better on special teams.”


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