ACU football (2-7 overall, 2-6 conference) allowed another Ed Eagan record setting night in a 39-22 loss to Northwestern State (3-6, 3-4).
The Wildcat’s old problems of slow first half starts and poor defense reared their ugly heads again, as the ‘Cats were outscored 39-6 through three quarters. ACU’s offense added 15 points in the fourth quarter to make the score a little closer, but the rally attempt was too late, leading to ACU’s sixth straight loss.
The ‘Cats pass defense failed to stop the Stephen Rivers, Ed Eagan connection.
Rivers completed 21-of-28 passes for 272 yards and three touchdowns. Rivers found All-Southland wide out Ed Eagan 13 times for 212 yards, including a 65-yard touchdown. Eagan caught 13 passes against the Wildcats last season to tie NSU’s single-game reception record. He did that again Saturday mostly against true freshman corner Jabari Butler.
NSU also pounded the ‘Cats on the ground for 194 yards at a 5.7 yards per carry clip. True freshman safety Junior Henderson led the team in tackles with 12.
Offensively, the ‘Cats were able to move the ball in 1st half but a missed field and a turnover on downs deep in NSU territory cost ACU points.
Quarterback Dallas Sealey took a step back against the Southland’s worst defense after putting up nice numbers against McNeese State. Sealey put together a nice touchdown in the first quarter but drops and inconsistent play plagued ACU’s offense. He completed 16-of-30 passes for 160 yards, one touchdown and one interception and added 47 yards and a touchdown on the ground.
ACU’s wide receivers were inconsistent throughout the game. However, true freshman wide receiver, Kalin Sadler, led the team with four catches for 50 yards. Sealey to Sadler is a nice young connection to see for a struggling ACU squad.
The run game still looked inconsistent as a large chunk of the team’s 173 rushing yards were compiled on Herschel Sim’s 68-yard touchdown run. Sims did rush 8 times for 92 yards, while starter De’Andre Brown managed just 35 yards on 10 carries.
ACU returns home this week for its final home against Southeastern Louisiana at 2 p.m.