The senior class took the field at Anthony Field one last time on Saturday in a tough loss to co-conference leading Southeastern Louisiana.
SLU put the first points on the board with 11:32 left in the first quarter with running back Devonte Williams taking the handoff from quarterback Chason Virgil for a six-yard touchdown.
The Wildcats lost momentum early in the first quarter as Sophomore quarterback Sema’J Davis was intercepted on his second pass of the game. That would not be the last, as both Davis and Junior quarterback Luke Anthony ended the game with three interceptions each, as well as a blocked punt.
“We tried to get out of the slump,” Senior running back Tracy James said. “It took a long time though, and the small things hurt us.”
The Lions extended their lead off of the interception, pushing it to 14-0 later in the first quarter with a 53-yard touchdown strike to tight end Matt DeBlaiso from the hand of Virgil. That would be Virgil’s first of two touchdown passes in the game, while also completing 19-30 attempts for 204 yards.
The Wildcats stumbled out of the gates, unable to score in the first quarter and for a majority of the second half. ACU’s first touchdown drive came with six minutes remaining in the half as sophomore quarterback Sema’J Davis ran the ball in for a two yard touchdown.
The 80-yard drive was setup by a 62-yard reception by senior wide receiver Josh Fink.
SLU made the most of the remaining time in the first half putting 21 points on the board before halftime. Both Chason Virgil and Devonte Williams had touchdown runs, as well as a connection from Virgil to receiver Javon Connor with five seconds remaining.
The second half was quiet for both offenses, but the ACU defense came out of halftime firing on all cylinders. Senior linebacker Jeremiah Chambers finished the game with 8.5 tackles.
Senior defensive back Adonis Davis forced and recovered a fumble on SLU’s own 34-yard line and Junior defensive tackle Lakendrick Jones had a blocked punt of his own.
“Our defense was very locked in the second half,” Head Coach Adam Dorrel said. “They continued to tackle extremely well.”
It was a bittersweet end for a group of seniors that have ground through the ups and downs over their four years at ACU. The seniors are very grateful for their experience here and what Head Coach Adam Dorrel has brought to the program.
“I have all the respect for coach Dorrel,” Fink said. “He has incorporated football into life, and I feel like I will take away lessons from here into my own life.”
The Wildcats have one final game to close out the season on the road next weekend against Mississippi State of the SEC. Kickoff is at 6:30 p.m. at Davis-Wade Stadium at Scott Field.
“It’s an incredible venue and opportunity for us,” Fink said. “We have nothing to lose, and we are excited to play hard and see what happens.”