Grizzlies unable to hold early lead in 26-17 to #25 Colorado Mines

Orediggers score 14 points in second half after trailing by three at the half
10/29/2011

ALAMOSA, Colo. – Touchdowns of 78 and 41 yards, as well as a 50-yard field goal by junior David Van Voris (Elizabeth, Colo.) put the Grizzlies up by three points at halftime against the 25th-ranked Orediggers, but Colorado Mines scored 14 unanswered in the second half to score a 27-16 win over ASC at Rex Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Saturday marked the third time in four home games that the Grizzlies have faced a ranked team, after having faced Colorado State-Pueblo and Nebraska-Kearney in their first two home games of the season.

After having won their last three games, the Grizzlies are now 5-4 overall this season and 3-4 against Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) opponents. The Orediggers, who have now extended their winning streak to three games with the win, sit at 7-2 overall and 5-2 in league play, good for third place in the RMAC standings.

After taking the ball to start the game, ASC was picked off on its first play of the game, but the Grizzly defense held the Orediggers to minus-10 yards on their first possession, including a 5-yard sack of quarterback Clay Garcia by seniors Rocco DeLorenzo (Arvada, Colo.) and Dereck Johns (Phoenix, Ariz.), which forced a punt on 4th-and-20.

Adams State struck quickly when the offense got the ball back as junior Trevor Eggleston (Tucson, Ariz.) hit Scott Kellogg (Littleton, Colo.) for the Grizzlies longest play from scrimmage of the season, a 79-yard touchdown strike.

Colorado Mines chipped into that lead on each of its next two possessions, concluding its next two drive with field goals and ending the first quarter trailing just 7-6.

The Grizzlies’ found themselves in the end zone on their first drive of the second quarter after taking over on their own 24-yard line. On the fourth play of the drive ASC moved into Mines territory when Eggleston found his favorite target on the day, senior Delton Prescott (Phoenix, Ariz.) for 16 yards to the 41-yard line. Two plays later, redshirt-freshman Michael Carl (Colorado Springs, Colo.) covered those final 41 yards in one play for his first career touchdown.

With a 7-point lead ASC attempted a 2-point conversion, but senior James Ackel (Riverside, Calif.) was stopped short for the first time in six attempts this season to leave the score at 13-6.

The missed attempt allowed Mines to tie the game with a TD and extra point of their own with 1:03 left in the half. Garcia capped a 6 play, 53 yard drive with a 1-yard tumble into the end zone.

But the Grizzlies would put together a quick 2-minue drill score before the half was out. The drive started with completions of 13 and 17 yards to sophomore Chris Jamison (Mesa, Ariz.) and Kellogg, respectively. A 7-yard rush by junior Isam Pegues (Los Angeles, Calif.) then put ASC close enough to attempt a go-ahead field goal with 16 seconds on the clock. Van Voris was good from 50 yards, the second longest field goal of his career, just one yard shorter than his career long which came against the Orediggers in 2010.

CSM wouldn’t spend long trailing, scoring a go-ahead TD of their own on the opening possession of the second half when Dan Palmer, who rushed for 92 of the Orediggers’ 94 yards, scored from five yards out 4:26 into the half.

With less than a minute to go in the quarter Palmer increased the CSM advantage to 27-16 on a 6-yard scamper.

The Grizzlies had several opportunities to put  more points on the board, but CSM recorded two picks, one in the end zone, and blocked field goal attempts of 25 and 55 yards to keep the Grizzlies off the board.

Eggleston completed 23-of-44 passes for a season-high 320 yards, finding Prescott 11 times for 145 yards. Prescott’s catches and yards were both career highs, while he equaled the most catches in a game by a Grizzly this season and had the second most yards in a game of the season for a receiver.

Kellogg also went over the 100-yard mark, catching four balls for 115 yards. He ended the day with 286 all-purpose yards, as he also returned three punts for 23 yards and five kicks for 148 yards, including a long of 70 yards.

DeLorenzo led the defense with 14 tackles, including 1.5 sacks for 14 yards and hurried Garcia twice.

Ackel and senior Will Naas (Tucson, Ariz.) each brought down ball carriers nine times, while Naas led the Grizzlies with three pass break-ups.

With two games left on the 2011 schedule, the Grizzlies hit the road for Grand Junction, Colo., next weekend where they’ll take on Colorado Mesa. The Mavericks claimed a 23-20 win over Western State Saturday, improving to 3-6 overall and 2-5 in RMAC play.

The Grizzlies scored a thrilling double overtime win against the Mavericks last season on a 25-yard TD pass from Eggleston to Bolt on the first play of the Grizzlies’ second overtime possession.

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