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Troy Holds on to Beat NMSU

By Southern Pigskin Staff
SouthernPigskin.com
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The Trojans seemingly controlled most of the first half of the game, but missed opportunities by allowing New Mexico State to stick around and ultimately make a push for the win.

Troy got away with a win, but had it's hands full with a scrappy New Mexico State team who looked like they were out of it early in the game.

The Trojans seemingly controlled most of the first half of the game, but missed opportunities by allowing New Mexico State to stick around and ultimately make a push for the win. The game started exactly how the Trojans would have liked it as New Mexico State started the game on their own 6 yard line after a holding penalty on the opening kickoff return. Troy forced the Lobos to a three and out and found the endzone on their first possession. Brandon Silvers passed the ball very well on the Trojans' first drive and ultimately found Damion Willis for the first score of the game.

New Mexico State was able to put a good drive together after starting with better field position, but only came away with a field goal. This didn't stop Troy's momentum at all as the Trojans marched back down the field, behind the arm of Brandon Silvers and the legs of Jordan Chunn, who ran three yards for a touchdown to bring Troy's lead to two possessions. The Trojan's would lead 13-3 after Bratcher Underwood missed the PAT.

But then, the missed opportunities to stretch the Trojans' lead started to pile up.

As the defense held New Mexico State at bay for the entire first half, Troy continued to march down the field, but on three straight drives, the Trojans didn't come away with points. First, the steady offensive attack battled down to the New Mexico State 11 yard line, but the drive stalled. The Trojans' still looked to come away with points, but Underwood missed a 27 yard field goal.

The Troy defense held New Mexico State to only 26 yards for the rest of the half, but Troy continued to keep the Lobos in the game. On their last two possessions of the first half, the Trojans marched into New Mexico State territory but turned the ball over on downs. Troy led 13-3 at halftime.

Troy kept their foot on the gas following the break, but this time they were able to move down the field with the running game. The Trojans ran for 50 yards on this drive along and capped it off with a 3 yard touchdown run from Jamarius Henderson. But even down 20-3 in the 3rd quarter, New Mexico State did not give in to defeat.

The Aggies responded with a touchdown drive of their own, in quick fashion as well. On a 3rd and 11, Tyler Rogers passed to Izaiah Lottie for a 46 yard touchdown, which was the first time the Aggies found the endzone all night. Following a missed PAT from Dylan Brown, Troy led 20-9.

Troy had no answer for New Mexico State and was forced to punt for the first time all night. On the Aggies' ensuing possession, Tyler Rogers took over the game. The New Mexico State Quarterback engineered a 12 play, 79 yard touchdown drive to cut the Troy lead to 20-16 late in the 3rd quarter.

After they took a couple punches in the gut by New Mexico State, Troy was finally able to respond. The Trojans got back to their balanced attack and marched into New Mexico State territory. The Aggie defense was then able to force Troy into a 4th and 1 situation from the NMSU 32. On one of the most stressful instances of the game, Brandon Silvers was able to work his magic and run 32 yards for a touchdown, extending the Troy lead to 27-16 at the end of the 3rd.

But New Mexico State would just not go away.

After trading possessions, the Aggies started on their own 11 yard line. New Mexico State then found their rhythm and balance on the offensive side of the ball, alternating between huge pass and run plays to make their way down the field. From Troy's 9 yard line,

Tyler Rogers found Izaiah Lottie for the second time of the night to get within one score. Tyler Rogers also completed the two-point conversion attempt to Jaleel Scott, bringing the Aggies to within 3, trailing Troy 27-24.

After a great stand by the Aggie defense, New Mexico State got the ball back to their offense. But this time, the Aggies couldn't make anything happen. They were forced to punt back to Troy with 8 minutes left in the game, pinning the Trojans on their own 3 yard line. That would be the last time the Aggies had the ball.

Leading 27-24, Troy engineered a 56 yard drive that ran out the clock and secured the wild, nail-biting win for the Trojans.

Troy outgained New Mexico State 469-382 on the night and compiled 26 first downs on the night, including 3 on the game sealing drive. It was a very sure-handed night for both teams as no team turned the football over. Brandon Silvers had a huge night for the Trojans as he ended the night with 286 passing yards, one passing touchdown and another touchdown on the ground.

 

​Written By: P.J. Zucco