SAN MARCOS, TX – Texas State coach Everett Withers has mentioned patience when talking about his young team leading into last night’s season opener, and while Bobcats fans may have had to remain patient through a scoreless first half and a shuffling of quarterbacks, they left Bobcat Stadium on Saturday night celebrating the team’s first win, a 20-11 victory over Houston Baptist.
“It’s always good to go in a locker room after 60 minutes of playing with a victory,” Withers said. “It’s also good to be able to come in on Sunday after a victory and be able to correct some things. Our goal is to be better than we were tonight at the end of practice tomorrow.”
Quarterback Damian Williams found some success early on the first drive, but the drive stalled and Houston Baptist true freshman Bailey Zappe was able to find multiple targets on a 11-play, 70 yard drive that ended with running back Terrance Peters finding the endzone.
Kicker Alec Chadwicks PAT attempt was blocked, but he was able to find the uprights late in the first quarter to put the Huskies up early 9-0.
The Bobcats would bounce back late in the second quarter though, as James Sherman kicked a 25-yard field goal.
Minutes later, HBU’s defense had a roughing the passer and face mask penalty that gave the Bobcats good field position. With the Bobcats offense on the Huskies 13-yard line, Williams used his rushing ability, including a four-yard touchdown run to get the Bobcats on the board again. Sherman’s PAT gave them the 10-9 lead entering the half.
Neither team was able to find much success on offense in the third quarter until Texas State’s freshman running back Anthony Smith broke loose as if he had just been shot out of a cannon for a 48-yard touchdown run.
A 26-yard field goal by Sherman sealed the Huskies fate as they were down 20-9 in the fourth quarter. While a safety gave HBU hopes for a comeback, the Bobcats defense, as they did all night, made the stops.
Texas State had 5 sacks, two of which belonged to linebacker Easy Anyama, who also finished with five tackles, a blocked kick and a forced fumble.
Williams completed 18 of his 28 pass attempts for 135 yards and one interception. Smith led all rushers with 71 yards, followed by Williams with 43.
For Houston Baptist, Zappe completed 21 of 34 passes for 199 yards and Dennis Houston led all receivers with seven receptions for 73 yards.
The Bobcats will face a big test next week as they travel to play the Colorado Buffaloes in Boulder.