Using an elaborate scoring system, the Missouri State defense outscored the offense, 53-38, here Saturday in the annual Maroon and White Spring Game at Plaster Field. However, the offense showed consistency in rolling up 312 yards on 74 plays and accounting for three touchdowns and a field goal.
Leading the way for the victorious defense were junior Chris Moses (ILB, Jacksonville, Fla.) and senior Darius Blow (CB, Grandview, Mo.) who had 8 and 7 tackles, respectively. Blow had a team-high three tackles for loss and a fumble recovery, while Moses was in on 1.5 TFLs and accounted for one of eight pass break-ups by the maroon-clad defensive squad.
Redshirt freshmen Caleb Schafitzel (S, Fair Grove, Mo.) and Mike Crutcher (S, Wentzville, Mo.) also pitched in six and five stops, respectively, while Andrew Beisel (RFr., ILB, Fenton, Mo.) had the game’s only interception, and walk-on Keenan Berry (So., DB, Osawatomie, Kan.) came up with a key fumble recovery deep in Maroon territory.
The White squad put up the first big points of the afternoon on a 10-yard touchdown run by Chris Douglas (Sr., TB, Lawrenceville, Ga.) in the first quarter, but the Maroon countered less than four minutes later with a team safety against the second-team offense.
Douglas tacked on his second touchdown run of the day early in the third period on a four-yard carry, and first-team quarterback Trevor Wooden (So., High Springs, Fla.) added six more for the offense with a 59-yard touchdown run just over three minutes later.
Austin Witmer (So., K, Grand Island, Neb.) added a 30-yard field goal in the fourth quarter to conclude the traditional scoring. Witmer was also a perfect 3-for-3 on extra points.
Even though there were no punting or kickoff plays, the defensive unit collected a point for each of the 12 possessions it forced the offense into a punting situation. The Maroon also tallied three points apiece for forcing the offense into six three-and-out possessions, and seven points for each of its three forced turnovers. The safety in the first quarter gave the Maroon squad a total of 53 points.
The offense collected its 38 points on three touchdowns, a field goal, and a point for each of its 14 first downs.
Leading the way for the White team, which averaged 4.2 yards per play, was Wooden who finished with 178 yards of total offense. He was 7-for-17 passing for 95 yards to go with 10 carries for 83 yards. Vernon Scott (So., Muskogee, Okla.) carried 18 times for 67 yards, and Douglass added 40 yards on 8 carries. Backup signal caller Mitchell Jenkins (RFr., Springfield, Mo.) finished 4-for-12 for 28 yards and 11 yards on the ground.
Jermaine Saffold (Sr., WR, Grandview, Mo.) had two receptions for 54 yards, including a 48-yard catch, while Matt Thayer (Jr., TE, Bellevue, Neb.) added two grabs for 31 yards, and Dan Reichert (Sr, WR, Harrisonville, Mo.) also had a pair of catches for 12 yards.