The Wildcats struggled in the second half and let a close game get away. The Buffaloes forced ACU to commit some costly turnovers, on which they capitalized. West Texas scored 32 points against a defense that had been giving up only 15 points per contest entering the day.
The Wildcats started off poorly when Mitchell Gale threw anÂ interception on ACU’s first drive, although the defense was able to hold the Buffaloes to a 28-yard field goal. Defense continued to be the story of the first quarter; the Wildcats did not get on the board until late in the first quarter, when Reggie Brown scored on a 1-yard touchdown run. The
Wildcats closed out the first quarter with a 7-3 lead.
The Wildcats found themselves in a tough spot in the second quarter when a Buffalo punt was downed on the Wildcat’s 1-yard line. Darryl Richardson could not get out of the end zone, and West Texas recorded a safety on the first play. The Buffaloes got the ball back with good field position after the free kick. West Texas running back Keithon Flemming scored on a 1-yard run to regain the lead for the Buffaloes, 12-7.
The Wildcats offense finally came alive in the last drive of the half as Gale led them down the field. Richardson scored on a 1-yard run with 14 seconds left in the half to make the score 14-12 Wildcats.
The Buffaloes regained the lead in the third quarter on an 8-yard touchdown reception by Flemming. The Wildcats answered early in the fourth quarter when Richardson scored his second touchdown of the game on a 4-yard run. This brought the score to 21-18 Wildcats with 14:26 left in the game.
The Wildcats got the ball back, but Gale was hit on a throw, forcing a bad pass that was picked off by the Buffaloes. The Buffaloes went 29 yards for a touchdown to regain the lead 25-18. The next Wildcat drive stalled, and the defense had to come back out to make a stop. The game came down to a third and fourth play from the Wildcat nine. ACU forced an incompletion, but a pass interference call gave the Buffaloes another first down. West Texas scored to seal the victory 32 -21.
“They played better than we did; they did not turn the ball over and we did,” said Head Coach Chris Thomsen. “Give them credit. I think they outplayed us.”
The Wildcats fell to 7-1 on the season, while the Buffaloes improved to 3-5. But the Wildcats will not have time tobrood, as they travel to Stephenville to take on Tarleton State next weekend.
“You recover from a loss just like you recover from a win; you go back to work,” Thomsen said.