Mustangs extinguish Blazers
Published: Monday, September 13, 2010
Updated: Tuesday, November 20, 2012 17:11
SMU picked up their first victory of the year Saturday night at Gerald J. Ford Stadium defeating the UAB Blazers 28-7 to open Conference USA play.
"This win is a big confidence booster, definitely a lot of momentum going into next week," SMU linebacker Pete Fleps said. "We are progressively working to where we want to go."
SMU picked up where they left off last week, turning the ball over early.
On SMU's second possession, quarterback Kyle Padron dropped back to pass and found wide receiver Patrick Fleming on a screen pass.
Fleming fumbled the ball which was recovered by UAB defensive tackle DJ Reese who returned it for 15 yards down to the SMU 9 yard line.
The Blazers capitalized on the turnover as quarterback David Isabelle found wide receiver Mike Jones in the back of the end zone for a 4 yard touchdown pass giving UAB a 7-0 lead midway through the first quarter.
Later in the first quarter, Blazers punter Trey Ragland booted a 75 yard punt to pin the Mustangs back at their own one yard line.
SMU got back in the game when running back Zach Line capped a 12 play, 99 yard drive that lasted more than seven minutes with a 5 yard touch down run to tie the game at 7-7 early in the second quarter.
Mustangs' wide receiver Aldrick Robinson was huge during the drive, hauling in 3 passes for 38 yards.
The Blazers also had 2 detrimental 15 yard personal foul facemask calls that went against them which allowed the SMU drive to continue.
Padron used his legs on the Mustangs next scoring possession, rushing for 49 yards on 4 carries.
"[Padron] did what he had to, to win the game and made the plays when he had to," Jones said. "I told him, ‘if you find a crease, run.'"
Line finished off the drive yet again by scoring his second touchdown of the game on a 4 yard burst through a gapping hole on the right side of the line to give SMU a 14-7 lead late in the second quarter.
UAB had three chances to score from the 1 yard line right before halftime but the Mustang defense made a momentum shifting goal line stance.
SMU linebacker Youri Yenga stopped Blazers' running back Pat Shed as time expired, securing the Mustangs' lead going into halftime.
"We just knew we had to stop them at the end of the half, it would be a huge momentum shifter," Fleps said. "We did our job and shut them down."
On UAB's first possession of the second half, Isabelle fired a 50 yard bomb to wide receiver Frantrell Forrest but SMU defensive back Ryan Smith jarred the ball lose just before Forrest was able to cross the goal line.
The ball rolled out of the end zone for a touchback.
SMU extended their lead nearly eight minutes into the third quarter when Padron connected with wide receiver Darius Johnson for a 5 yard touchdown.
Line rumbled 26 yards on an impressive run into UAB territory to help set up the score.
The Mustang defense once again rose to the occasion to begin the fourth quarter.
"Our front seven is pretty good and we have some team speed at linebacker," Jones said. "Defensively we've been thorough."
Smith made another key defensive play for the SMU when he intercepted an Isabelle pass early in the fourth quarter, killing a UAB drive.
Later, the Blazers attempted a fake punt in SMU territory but the Mustangs were not fooled and set up the offense in great field position.
Padron returned the favor by once again hooking up with Johnson for their second touchdown combination of the game. This time Padron scrambled to his left and threw a 15 yard bullet to Johnson giving the Mustangs a permanent 28-7 lead.
Padron finished the game with 145 yards passing and two touchdowns. He also added 70 yards on the ground.
Line finished with a career high 122 yards rushing and 2 touchdowns.
"All that matters is that W," Line said. "It's nice to get some carries but my main priority will be to block."
Line and the Mustangs will take on Washington State at Gerald J. Ford Stadium on Saturday Sept. 18 at 2:30 p.m.