Con Marshall Chadron Record BOX SCORE
The Chadron State Eagles gave up 35 straight points in the first half to the Western Colorado Mountaineers en route to a 56-28 loss on Saturday in a Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference game in Gunnison.
The Eagles are 0-4 for the first time since 1987.
The Mountaineers, now 2-2, got off to a fast start behind senior quarterback Conner Desch, who completed 15 of 18 passes for 234 yards and five touchdowns in the first half. Desch hit Malik White with about a 50-yard pass on the third play of the game, and the senior receiver turned it into a 73-yard touchdown jaunt.
The Eagles tied the score on their ensuing possession by driving 75 yards in 12 plays. The march included quarterback Mason Hamilton’s 19-yard pass to running back Dorian Collier, tosses of 10 and 13 yards to tight end Peter Krohn and a 14-yard burst by Jeydon Cox to set the stage for Jalen Starks’s leap over a couple of would-be tacklers into the end zone.
Chadron State forced Western to punt on its next possession, but immediately lost a fumble at their 21-yard line. Desch connected with tight end Nathan Meyer for a touchdown on the ensuing play to give Western a 14-7 lead.
That was among the four times the Eagles gave up the ball in their own territory, providing the Mountaineers with a short field.
The Mountaineers scored four touchdowns in the second quarter. Tailback Josh Cummings initially went 14 yards to paydirt and Desch, a 6-foot-3, 205-pound senior, threw 10-yard scoring passes to Kai Emmsley and White and a 12-yarder to Cole Riters to forge the lopsided halftime score.
Each of the first three drives covered from 50 to 60 yards and the fourth 35 after the Mountaineers blocked a Chadron State punt.
The Eagles accumulated only 140 yards in the first half, but gained 209 and scored three times in the second half. The visitors ran 93 plays from scrimmage compared to 66 for Western and finished with 23 first downs, eight more than the Mountaineers.
Each team possessed the ball almost exactly 30 minutes.
Chadron State’s second touchdown came on Hamilton’s 37-yard pass to redshirt freshman Tommy Thomas midway in the third quarter.
Again, Western was forced to punt, but the Eagles fumbled the ball away during the return. The Mountaineers recovered on the CSC 17 and scored the third play when Deyvon Butler went up the middle from 12 yards out, making the score 49-14.
The Eagles scored again with 2:39 left in the third quarter on a four-yard pass to Montel Gladney to cap a 75-yard drive that included Hamilton’s 52-yard connection with alternate tight end Ro Abercrombie.
Both teams scored once in the final period. Another Chadron State error—a botched punt that went just five yards—set up the Mountaineers’ TD. Western took over on the CSC 25, and scored on the third play, a seven-yard run by alternate tailback Breadan Hogan.
Late in the game, the Eagles got their only takeaway when safety Draymond Hill intercepted a Western pass at the hosts’ 43. Redshirt freshman Preston Pearson took over at quarterback and directed a nine-play drive that saw Pearson carry five times for 23 yards before Starks scored on two power rushes from the nine.
Most of the statistics were closer than the final score. Two where the Eagles came out ahead were first downs and play. They had with 23 first downs, 6 more than Western, and ran 93 plays to 66 for the Mountaineers, who finished with 451 total net yards, 102 more than CSC.
Desch, who did not play in the final quarter, finished 18 of 24 for 265 yards passing and his five first half TD tosses. Fourteen Mountaineers caught passes, led by White and Meyer with three apiece for 90 and 73 yards, respectively.
Cummings, who rushed for 1,300 yards last season, finished with 10 carries and 64 yards Saturday.
Hamilton had a major workout while making his first start after previous starter Heath Beemiller sustained a knee injury early in the fourth quarter the previous week against Black Hills State. The sophomore from Gillette threw 51 passes, competing 28 for 242 yards and two TDs.
Nine Eagles caught passes with Thomas’s five receptions for 64 yards leading the way. CSC sophomore linebacker Xavier Harrell was credited with 10 unassisted tackles to lead both teams in that category.
Both Riters and Chadron State’s Gunnar Jones were perfect on their extra point kicks.
The Eagles will host the Colorado Mines Orediggers during homecoming next Saturday, October 1.
First Downs 23 17
Total Net Yards 349 451
Rushes, Yards 40-105 36-156
Passing Yards 244 295
Passing 29-53-1 21-30-1
Return Yards 21 76
Punts, Average 8-38.5 5-42.3
Fumbles, Lost 2-2 1-0
Penalties, Yards 8-55 7-55
Chadron State 7 0 14 7 —28
Western Colorado 14 28 7 7 —56
WCU—Malik White 73 pass from Connor Desch (Alec Fonseca kick)
CSC—Jalen Starks 1 run (Gunnar Jones kick)
WCU—Nathan Meyer 21 pass from Desch (Fonseca kick)
WSC—Josh Cummings 14 run (Fonseca kick)
WCS—Kai Emmsley 11 pass from Desch (Fonseca kick)
WSC—White 10 pass from Desch (Fonseca kick)
WSC—Riters 12 pass from Desch (Fonseca kick)
CSC—Tommy Thomas 37 pass from Mason Hamilton (Jones kick)
WSC—Deyvon Butler 12 run (Fonseca kick)
CSC—Montel Gladney 4 pass from Hamilton (Jones kick)
WSC—Braeden Hogan 7 run (Fonseca kick)
CSC—Starks 4 run (Jones kick)
Rushing: CSC—Jeydon Cox 10-40, Jalen Starks 9-38, Preston Pearson 4-23, Dorian Collier 5-17.
Rylan Auguallo 6-14, Ahlonte Hair 1-4, Grant Swenson 1-2, Jackson Hesford 1-minus 6, Mason Hamilton 3-minus 27. WCU—Josh Cummings 1-64, Tony Cass 4-33, Deyvon Butler 9-25, Braeden Hogan 7-16, Antwuan Jackson 2-10, Conner Desch 4-8.
Passing: CSC—Mason Hamilton 28-51-1, 242 yards, 2 TDs; Preston Pearson 1-2-0, 3 yards; Connor Desch 18-24-0, 265 yards, 5 TDs; Antwuan Jackson 3-6-1, 23 yards.
Receiving: CSC—Tommy Thomas 5-64, Ro Abercrombie 1-52, Jamal Browder 5-34, Peter Krohn 3-33, Dorian Collier 5-30, Grant Swenson 4-15, Ahlonte Hair 1-6, Montel Gladney 2-6, Jackson Hesford 1-3. WSC—Malik White 3-90, Nathan Meyer 3-73, David Victory 1-43, Jaydon Green 1-23, Sage Yazzie 2-19, Kai Emmsley 2-10, Dan Persek 1-8, Braeden Hogan 1-4, Andrew Montez 1-3, Josh Cummings 1-1, Dayvon Butler 1-minus 2.