West Texas A&M kept its Homecoming sellout crowd of 9,124 fans on edge a little longer than they wanted, but were able to hang on for a 48-41 victory against Central Washington on Saturday night on J Ferg Field at Buffalo Stadium.
West Texas A&M tight end Jordan Johnson finds running room against Central Washington on Saturday on Ferg Field at Buffalo Stadium. [Mackenzie Teal/ Press Pass Sports]
Buff Talk: Lucas Kinsey and Kale Steed breakdown the Buffs win over Central Washington.
The game was a tale of two halves with the Buffs jumping out to a 34-10 halftime lead.
WT opened the advantage up to 41-10 on a Juwan McCall 50-yard touchdown catch from Nick Gerber with 8:06 left in the third.
However, the Wildcats never went away, becoming a thorn in the WT defense’s side.
CWU rallied back outscoring the Buffs 31-7 in the final quarter and a half. After Tyson Rainwater 55-yard touchdown catch from Christian Moore with 1:42 left in the game, the Wildcats cut the defict to 48-38 with a chance at making it a one possession game on the two-point conversion.
Fortunately for WT, the defense stepped up and stuffed running back Michael Roots at the 1-yard line.
“Central Washington fought,” WT head coach Hunter Hughes said. “We were up 41-10 and had a chance to put a hammer down and we didn’t. We made mistakes we have to get fixed. But we came away with a win, but there are things we have to get better at.”
WT receiver Juwan McCall runs after a catch against Central Washington on Saturday. [Mackenzie Teal/ Press Pass Sports]
The Buffs offense put 34 points at halftime. That’s the first time a WT offense has scored 30 plus points in a first half since Nov. 14, 2015 against Texas A&M-Kingsville.
Wide receiver Juwan McCall and running back Jarrod Compton each had career nights. McCall caught seven passes for 132 yards and a touchdown. McCall becomes the first WT receiver with back-to-back 100-yard games since Xavier Amey in 2014.
Compton, a redshirt freshman, racked up 115 yards on 17 carries. He also had two big touchdown runs. Compton’s first touchdown came when he found a hole, made a great stutter-step, and went 44-yards putting the Buffs up 13-3. Compton’s second TD was a 14-yard run highlighted by a beautiful spin move into the endzone.
The Buffs offense totaled 441 total yards for the game.
THE BAD AND UGLY
The WT defense struggled for the lack of better words in the fourth quarter. The Wildcats trailed 41-17 entering the final 15 minutes. However, they outscored the Buffs 21-7 in the final frame, including putting up 16 points in the final 3:30 minutes.
CWU totaled 631 yards of offense with 279 of those yards coming in the fourth.
Running back Michael carried the ball only three times for 84 yards in the fourth, finishing with 212 yards on the night.
WT improves to 4-1 overall since the first time since the 2013 season. The Buffs beat the Wildcats (1-4) for a second straight year. WT steps back into Lone Star Conference play at UT Permian Basin at 6 p.m. next Saturday.
West Texas A&M 48, Central Washington 41
Central Washington 3 7 7 24 — 41
West Texas A&M 20 14 7 7 — 48
WT—Jordan Johnson 18 run (kick failed), 14:14
CW—Gavin Todd FG 36, 10:09
WT—Jarrod Compton 44 run (Mauricio Gonzalez kick), 1:20
WT—Donevin Manuel 4 blocked punt return (Gonzalez kick), 0:00
WT—Duke Carter IV 1 run (Gonzalez kick), 10:18
CW—Tony Archie 13 pass from Canon Racanelli (Todd kick), 8:22
WT—Semaj Mitchell 9 pass from Nick Gerber (Gonzalez kick), 6:30
WT—Juwan McCall 50 pass from Nick Gerber (Gonzalez kick), 8:06
CW—Archie 26 pass from Christian Moore (Todd kick), 6:17
CW—Michael Roots 41 pass from Moore (Roots run), 14:19
WT—Compton 14 run (Gonzalez kick), 10:41
CW—Mykel Campbell 26 pass from Moore (Todd kick), 3:44
CW—Tyson Rainwater 55 pass from Moore (Todd kick), 1:42
CW—Todd FG 40, 0:11
First downs 28 20
Rushing 238 217
Passing 393 224
Total yards 631 441
C-A-I 25-49-2 18-31-1
Punts-Avg 6-30.0 6-36.3
Fumbles-lost 3-1 0-0
TOP 31:49 28:11
Pen.-yards 8-71 2-12
RUSHING—Central Washington: Roots 21-207, Eric Wilkes 2-20, Christian Moore 7-13, Racanelli 6-2, Jo Jo Hillel 1-5, Archie 1-(-9). West Texas A&M: Compton 15-117, Carter 23-87, Johnson 4-19, Gerber 2-(-5), Team 1-(-1)..
PASSING—Central Washington: Racanelli 7-16-1-54, Moore 18-31-1-339. West Texas A&M: Gerber 18-31-1-224.
RECEIVING—Central Washington: Archie 6-76, Rainwater 6-116, Campbell 4-67, Rpbert Mason 3-5, Roots 3-84, Hillel 2-34, Drake Owen 1-11. West Texas A&M: McCall 7-132, Johnson 3-46, Mitchell 1-9, Jamaal Hamilton 2-12, Chase Sojka 3-24, Carter 1-1, Compton 1-0.