Turnovers prove costly in Troy loss

Published 12:30 am Saturday, September 14, 2013

By Danielle Percival

Numbers don’t lie but they don’t always tell the whole story.

In Thursday night’s 41-34 loss to the Arkansas State Redwolves, the Troy Trojans managed 614 yards of total offense, but the biggest numbers in the game were actually some of the smallest in the final stats.

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Four turnovers, including three interceptions thrown by Corey Robinson, and three penalties, all in the fourth quarter, proved to be much of the difference in the game.

“No way you can overcome that much negativity in your offense,” head coach Larry Blakeney said. “Everybody knows it, you can’t do that and win a game.”

It’s not just about having turnovers and penalties throughout the game. It’s also about when and where on the field the mistakes occur.

“We had big runs and they were brought back for holding calls,” Deon Anthony said. “We’ve got to limit that in practice and get better from here.”

The three penalties the Trojans had in the game were all holding and twice brought back long runs.

On second-and-3 with just under 11 minutes to go in the game, Anthony rushed for 35 yards, however, that was brought back because of a holding penalty.

Later in the same drive on third-and-8, a Brandon Burks rush for 20 yards was again brought back due to holding.

The very next play, Robinson was intercepted for the second time in the game.

His first interception was a tipped ball that happened to be caught, but his final interception of the game was a third-and-14 rushed attempt that was picked off with just over a minute remaining in the game.

“When it goes south, sometimes it all goes south,” Blakeney said.

The top two offenses in the Sun Belt were on the field Thursday night, but though the Trojans put up more yards, it was the Redwolves who made the most of their opportunities.

“I feel like we should have won the game,” defensive tackle Shermane TeArt said. “I feel like we beat ourselves.”

Arkansas State finished with 539 total yards but did not turn the ball over in the game.

The Trojan defense was able to record two sacks in the game and bring their season total to nine through three games.

Eric Thomas and Bryan Holmes both finished with over 100 receiving yards and a touchdown.

Wilson Van Hooser led the team with 133 all-purpose yards, most coming from kick returns but his one reception in the game was crucial.

Hooser had a 20-yard reception on fourth-and-16 late in the fourth quarter and after an initial ruling that Hooser was out of bounds, the call was overturned and the Trojans drive continued.

“There’s a lot of things we can feel good about,” Blakeney said. “These guys are playing hard, we’ve just got to play smarter.”