Appalachian State University football wrapped up its second week of spring practice with an intrasquad scrimmage on Thursday afternoon at Kidd Brewer Stadium. The 90-minute scrimmage was the first conducted in full pads this spring and primarily featured work on specific situations
(first-and-10, third-and-short, third-and-long, first-and-goal). However, for 42 plays, the Mountaineers went head-to-head in a game-like conditions (i.e. moving up and down the field).
Appalachian’s defense stood out for much of the afternoon, limiting the offense to just one score in nine possessions during the true scrimmage period. ASU’s offense manage just 136 yards in those 42 snaps (3.2 yards per play) and went three-and-out five times. The offense’s only sustained drive came on the third series of the scrimmage (the first pitting the second units) when reserve quarterback Kameron Bryant led the Mountaineers 65 yards in six plays, capped by a nine-yard touchdown run by true freshman Tysean Holloway. Bryant accounted for 40 yards on the drive (28 rushing, 12 passing) while Holloway totaled 27 yards (15 rushing, 12 receiving).
Aside from the 65-yard scoring drive, ASU’s defense surrendered just 71 yards over the other eight series. Sophomore defensive lineman James Robinson led the way with a sack and two tackles for loss. Senior defensive back Troy Sanders added two stops of his own behind the line of scrimmage while redshirt freshman defensive lineman Davante Harris chipped in with a pass break-up and quarterback hurry.
The defense wound up scoring more than the offense when the Mountaineers returned a pair of blocked field goals for touchdowns. With primary kickers Drew Stewart and Sam Martin both sidelined with injuries, sophomores Joel Ross and Doug Middleton blocked field-goal attempts that were returned for scores by Demetrius McCray and Rodger Walker, respectively.
The defense continued to shine during 10 goal-line series to end the scrimmage, holding the offense out of the end zone four times. Starting quarterback Jamal Jackson accounted for two of the offense’s six scores during the goal-line period, finding redshirt Sean Price for a nine-yard touchdown pass and leaping into the end zone for a three-yard scoring run. However, the defense found paydirt once again when Middleton scooped up a fumble and returned it 90 yards for a touchdown.
Appalachian has completed eight of the 15 practices allowed by the NCAA during spring drills. The Mountaineers return to the practice field for their final full week of spring practice on Monday and spring drills conclude on Tuesday, April 3.
NOTES: Sophomore Logan Hallock who arrived at ASU as a quarterback in 2010 but was moved to wide receiver last spring began taking snaps behind center once again earlier this week ... Hallock shared quarterbacking duties with Bryant during Thursday’s scrimmage ... four Mountaineers have sustained injuries/illnesses that will keep them out of action for the rest of the spring — sophomore offensive lineman Alex Acey (foot), sophomore offensive lineman Kalan Jones (illness), senior running back Steven Miller (shoulder) and redshirt freshman wide receiver Seth Sloan (shoulder) ... all four are expected to be at 100 percent for the start of fall camp ... junior defensive back Patrick Blalock (hamstring) was injured this week but could return to action before the conclusion of spring practice ... Stewart sustained a foot injury during Thursday’s practice and is day-to-day ... three Mountaineers have missed all of spring drills due to injury — junior defensive back Jamill Lott (knee), Martin (knee/back) and junior running back Travis Wilson (back) — but all three could potentially return before spring practice wraps up.
OFFENSIVE SCRIMMAGE STATISTICS
Passing: Jackson 5-12, 28 yds.; Bryant 2-2, 20 yds.; Hallock 0-1, 0 yds.
Rushing: Bryant 5-24; Holloway 6-23, TD; Hallock 2-16, Chisholm 4-10, Frazier 4-7; Morgan 3-5; Jackson 2-5; Andre 1-1
Receiving: McElfresh 3-22; Holloway 1-12; Shuler 1-8; Morgan 1-6; Baker 1-0
Photo Courtesy: James Robinson, by Dave Mayo, ASU Athletics