|Avila (Mo.) (1-1)||13||8||10||13||44|
|Graceland (Iowa) (0-2)||0||0||7||12||19|
|Avila (Mo.)||Indv. Leaders||Graceland (Iowa)|
|#26 Demonte McClary - 200||Rushing||#5 Brandon English - 41|
|#6 Spenser Lewis - 92||Passing||#4 Preston Compton - 389|
|#2 Theo Berry - 26||Receiving||#6 Caleb Thomas - 189|
|Avila (Mo.)||Team Statistics||Graceland (Iowa)|
LAMONI, IA - Graceland University fell on Saturday night to Avila University. The Eagles defeated the Jackets 44-19.
Following the contest, the Jackets fell to 0-2 on the season, while Avila improved to 1-1.
"This was a poor game for us from a fundamental standpoint," said Marc Kolb, head coach. "It doesn't matter what type of offense or defense you run, the game always comes down to blocking and tackling. Unfortunately we didn't do either of them very well tonight. We will refocus on the fundamentals of the game."
Graceland's opening drive of the game saw a seven-yard reception by James Morrision, followed by an 18-yard catch by Caleb Thomas. The Eagles defense then put together a series of stops forcing the Jackets to punt. On Avila's opening drive, the Eagles started deep in their own territory, stringing eight plays together to quickly move ahead 7-0 midway through the first.
Later in the quarter, a Yellowjacket turnover, gave the ball to Avila at the Graceland 37. With less than a minute left in the first half, Avila scored a rushing touchdown, failing to convert on the extra point. Graceland trailed 13-0 after the first quarter.
The Eagles struck again quickly in the second quarter, extending the lead to 21-0. During Graceland's third series of the second quarter, Compton connected with Jaylin McCarty on back-to-back 9-yard gains. A nice run by Brandon English and a pair of catches by two different were also included in the drive. GU threatened to score, knocking on the door of the endzone, before turning the ball over on downs. Graceland threatedned to score another time later in the period, but trailed 21-0 at halftime.
Momentum continued to shy away from Graceland, as Avila returned a kickoff 72 yards to score, pushing the margin to 28-0. A couple minutes later, the Jacket defense found themselves back on the field. GU banded together, forcing AU to kick a 22-yard field goal. The Jackets trailing 31-0.
Two possessions later, Graceland's defense came up with a huge turnover. Askia Harris intercepted Spenser Lewis' pass, giving GU's offense the ball back on their own two. Compton and the Yellowjacket offense began working the ball down the field. During the drive, Jerry Greer accumulated a 11-yard reception, followed by Brandon English's 20-yard gain on the ground. Compton connected with Caleb Thomas on fourth and long to move the chains. A play later, English tabbed a 14-yard run, putting the Jackets in Eagle territory. Compton also connected with Taz Richardson on the series, landing GU on AU's five-yard line. A turnover late hurt Graceland, but GU soon quickly got the ball back with Avila's three-and-out.
Graceland was finally able to get on the scoreboard during their final drive of the third quarter. Compton found Thomas in the endzone for a 16-yard touchdown pass. Darnel Uran sent the extra point through the uprights, the score in favor of AU at 31-7.
The fourth and final quarter consisted of two Avila touchdowns and two Graceland touchdowns. With 3:42 to play in the contest, GU's Mitrione Smith blocked a punt, placing the Jackets at the Avila 10-yard line. Compton found Thomas to score the touchdown. The Yellowjackets second touchdown of the quarter was a rushing touchdown by Rossano James-Smith in the final 30 seconds of the contest. Graceland fell 44-19 in the game.
Avila University produced 448 yards of total offense to Graceland's 473. The Eagles were limited to 92 yards in the air, while Graceland totaled 389. The Eagles compiled 356 yards on the ground to Graceland's 84.
Compton threw for all of Graceland's 389 yards, completing 38 of 67 attempts. Caleb Thomas led the receivers with 21 catches for 189 yards and two touchdowns. Jaylin McCarty added nine catches for 88 yards. On the ground, Brandon English totaled 41 yards on five attempts. Rossano James-Smith marked 35 yards on seven attempts with one touchdown.
Defensively, the Jackets forced one interception, along with a blocked a punt and field goal. GU also tabbed four tackles for a loss for nine yards. Deion Betts led the team with 11 tackles – seven of which were solo. Jeff Sanders and Evaristo Casimiro added seven tackles.
Graceland University will take to the road next week, playing No. 12 Missouri Valley College on Sept. 9 at 6 p.m.
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