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Govs finally wear down late against Virginia Tech | Austin Peay

Austin PeayBLACKSBURG, Va.-Logan Thomas threw for 212 yards and two touchdowns to lead No. 15/18 Virginia Tech to a 42-7 victory against resilient Austin Peay State University, Saturday afternoon, in a non-conference game.

Virginia Tech, an Atlantic Coast Conference powerhouse, moves to 2-0 on the season while APSU falls to 0-2. The Govs will open Ohio Valley Conference play next week at Tennessee State.

Although the final score show the Govs losing by 35 points, head coach Rick Christophel knows that margin was misleading.

“We knew coming in that we had to do everything right,” APSU coach Rick Christophel said. “When you don’t do things right on special teams and you give up some big plays, you are going to have some problems.

“We had some opportunities. I thought we played really, really hard. It was a good ball game-we got a little tired at the end.

“I told the players after the game that I was as proud of them as any team we have had here at Austin Peay because they fought all the way to end.”

Thomas, the All-America candidate, finished 15 of 23 passing. His 30-yard scoring toss to Corey Fuller with 26 seconds left in the first half eased the tension of Hokie fans who were more than a bit restless for much of the first half as APSU forced two Hokie punts, forced a turnover and stopped Virginia Tech on a fourth-and-one deep in APSU territory.

That late first-half score gave Virginia Tech a 21-0 lead going into halftime-the Hokies took advantage of a blocked punt to the second quarter to score their second TD. The Hokies benefitted frrom a Govs turnover midway through the third quarter to break open the game 28-0.

However, the Governors responded with their season’s most impressive drive, going 78 yards on six plays, the bulk coming on Wesley Kitts runs-he accounted for 49 yards, including a 32-yard run. Kitts got the Govs to the 10 and Terrence Oliver scored his career’s first TD, a 10-yard up-the-middle run as APSU cut the deficit to 28-7.

Kitts finished with a career-best 110 yards on 22 carries. In his first two career starts-both against Football Bowl Subdivision schools, Kitts has rushed for more than 100 yards.

But the most improve play came up front defensively. The Govs held Virginia Tech to 187 yards rushing, many coming late in the contest when APSU began to tire.

“We talked after the game last week, where we thought we had to improve the most and that was up front,” Christophel said. “And we did.”

Defensively, Johnathan Shuler led the way with nine stops, including 1.5 for loss while Craig Salley, Earnest Smith and Steven Rich each had nine-Salley and Smith had sacks of Thomas.

 

-AP-

Austin Peay Football

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