SHERMAN, Texas – The Austin College football team got four total touchdowns from Colt Collins and held off a third quarter charge by Millsaps College to earn the program’s first Southern Athletic Association victory on Saturday afternoon as part of Homecoming and Family Weekend at Jerry Apple Stadium. The ‘Roos are now 3-4 overall and 1-4 in SAA play.
It was a slow start for both teams as Austin College fumbled on the first play from scrimmage deep in their own territory, and the ‘Roo defense held the Majors to a 24 yard field goal to make it 3-0 less than two minutes into the game. Those would be the only points of the first quarter, as the Majors took their lead into the second by holding Austin College without a first down in the opening period.
Millsaps drove all the way down to the Austin College two-yard line but a frumble at the goal line gave the ball to the ‘Roos, and after trading possessions one more time Austin College took its first lead of the game when Colt Collins hit Kyle Mucerino for a 48-yard touchdown strike to make the score 6-3 after a missed point after attempt. Austin College got the ball back quickly with good field position, and wasted little time getting into the endzone again, this time with Collins hitting Mucerino for a 45-yard touchdown to make it 13-3 with 5:50 left before the break.
TJ Melontree picked off a Millsaps pass with 35 seconds left in the quarter, and on the first play of the ensuing possession Collins found Brennan Ellis for a 29-yard touchdown, making it 19-3 after the extra point was blocked. The ‘Roos piled up 147 yards in the second quarter, while holding the Majors to just 37.
Millsaps came out strong in the second half, quickly driving down the field behind the running of Isaiah Talton. Talton led a seven play, 75-yard drive and scored on a 24-yard run, making it 19-9 after the 2-point conversion failed. The ‘Roos went 3-and-out on their next possession, and once again the running game led the Majors down the field 86 yards in 13 plays, highlighted by a 28 yard run by Ty Proctor. Chance Clowers finished the drive with a 16-yard touchdown pass to Ty Durham to cut it to a 19-16 game with 3:01 left in the third quarter.
However, Austin College answered quickly, marching 72 yards in just five plays, with Collins finding Kevin Ray for a 51-yard completion down to the two-yard line with the ‘Roos facing third and nine. Collins took it in himself to make it 26-16 with 39 seconds remaining in the quarter.
The Majors got three points back at the 7:57 mark of the fourth quarter on a 27-yard field goal by Hunter Sellen, but once again the ‘Roos had an answer. Austin College used a nine play, 75-yard drive that milked nearly five minutes off the clock, capped off by a six-yard touchdown run by Evan Powell to make it 33-19 with 3:16 left to play.
Penalties kept Millsaps alive on the ensuing possession, as the Majors got all the way down to the Austin College 11-yard line, but a turnover on downs with 1:03 left sealed the victory for the ‘Roos.
Collins finished the game completing 14-of-23 passes for 239 yards with three touchdowns and a pick, adding a team-best 38 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Powell chipped in with 37 yards on eight carries, and Mucerino finished with four catches for 118 yards and two scores. Jackson Townsend led the ‘Roo defense with nine tackles, while Darlon Chandler had five stops, including 2.5 for loss with a sack, in addition to three quarterback hurries.
Austin College is back at Jerry Apple Stadium next Saturday for the final time in 2017, as the ‘Roos play host to Birmingham-Southern with kickoff set for 1:00 p.m.