First Scrimmage Highlighted by Big Plays
April 13, 2013
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin Lumberjack football team ended the second week of spring camp with a 90-play scrimmage at Homer Bryce Stadium. The contest saw big plays on both sides the ball, and ended with SFA focusing on the red zone.
"I was really impressed with the tough attitude that our offense brought to the field today," said SFA offensive coordinator Chris Truax. "Clearly we have some things that we need to work on and get better but I'm pleased with the work ethic."
"I'm proud of our defense. We've been working on adding some new things and I thought we looked good today. We had some guys really step and make some big plays for us. You're always pleased when you're defense goes out and forces some turnovers," added SFA defensive coordinator David Gibbs.
The start of the scrimmage looked like it was going to be a long day for the defense as senior Brady Attaway completed 4-of-his-first-5 passes for 63 yards, on a drive that ended with Attaway scoring on a play-action bootleg from 15 yards out.
The defense settled down after the score and limited the offense's ability to move the ball on the next three drives. Attaway, and sophomore Joe Minden, combined to go 6-for-17 (.353) during that stretch, and the defense didn't allow a completion of more than 16 yards.
In addition to the slowing the tempo of the passing game, the defense did a solid job of surrounding 2012 first-team All-Southland Conference running back Gus Johnson. The Gilmer, Texas native, had rushed for only 20 yards on his first 13 carries, including four carries that ended in lost yards.
Redshirt sophomore running back Fred Ford flipped the momentum when he sparked the offense with his speed. Ford finished the day with seven rushes for 69 yards including a 40-yard sprint for a touchdown. Following Ford's TD run the offense rallied for seven more scores. Attaway, sophomore Joe Minden, and redshirt freshman Hunter Taylor each threw a touchdown, while junior receiver D.J. Ward rushed for two scores and passed for another, and Johnson finished the scrimmage with a score.
Despite his early struggles, Johnson closed the scrimmage strong. He averaged 24 yards per carry on his last three rushes, including a 50-yard touchdown run. He finished the day with 16 carries for 92 yards (5.8 ypc).
Ward showed off his versatility for the Lumberjacks Saturday morning. He finished the day being responsible for four touchdowns. He carried the ball three times for 47 yards and two TDs, completed a nine-yard pass for a score, and hauled in a 13-yard scoring strike from Minden.
Attaway completed 9-of-17 (53 percent) passes for 133 yards and a score, while Minden was 10-of-25 (.400) for 67 yards and a TD. Junior Braxton Bearden caught four passes for 25 yards, while classmate Marquis Mosley had four receptions for 66 yards and two touchdowns.
Junior linebacker Collin Garrett led the defense with 10 tackles, including six solo stops and a pass breakup. Lamarcus Brown added eight tackles, including five unassisted and an interception. Keavon Madison picked off a pass as well.
The Lumberjacks are scheduled to hold their second scrimmage of the spring Saturday, April 20, at Homer Bryce Stadium.