Lions fall to Mules 71-42 at homecoming

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Photo by Mike Gullett

Brian Boyd Jr. celebrating after scoring a touchdown vs. the University of Central Missouri on Oct. 5 

Mitch Carney

The Missouri Southern Lions fell to the University of Central Missouri Mules 71-42 last Saturday as their record fell to 1-4. The Lions had a quick start to the game as they finished the first quarter with a seven-point lead before they allowed the Mules to tie it before halftime. The Lions would then give up 36 consecutive points before they would get back in the end zone. The Lions would score again to make the score 64-42, but the Mules would put the game away with an 85-yard run from Roosevelt Abram to make the score 71-42. 

Although the Lions didn’t come away with a win for the third week in a row, there was still some bright spots on the offensive side. Senior quarterback Jacob Park threw for 519 yards, as he became the first Lion to throw for half a thousand yards in game. He completed 39 out of his 59 attempts to set the record while throwing four touchdowns. Park still threw four interceptions adding on to Southerns’ MIAA leading total with 17. 

The Lions did have three receivers have had a game over 100 yards receiving, as juniors Brian Boyd Jr. had 116 yards and two touchdowns, Brailon Mouton had 100 yards and two touchdowns, while Devond Blair Jr. had 160 yards receiving to lead the team. This would break another Southern record as the Lions have never had three receivers have over 100 yards receiving. 

On the defensive side, the Lions were led by freshman Colton Winder who had a career-high of 15 tackles, while senior John Ejizu had 10 of his own. Senior Jamie Tago, junior Malachi Broadnax and redshirt junior Levi’s Marlay each had a sack, while junior David rose would get the Lions only interception of the night. 

“The offense played a great game, despite the turnovers. On defense, we weren’t locked in during the game, as we let UCM score an assortment of points, which in turn put pressure on our offense,” said Ejizu. “As a team if you score over 35 points you should win the game. Unfortunately, for us we have yet to play a game where we have accomplished that. We have a lot of things to improve on, but once we improve the little things, we’ll be very scary to play. We’ve only been together for two months and we’ve been battling and pushing really good teams in our conference.”

The Lions’ next game will be against Missouri Western State University, which is currently 3-2 on the season. Missouri Western averages 42.4 points per game led by their quarterback Wyatt Steigerwald, who leads the griffons 1,206 yards passing and 12 touchdowns. 

The Griffons’ leading rusher is running back Markel Smith, who has 423 yards and seven touchdowns on the season. 

“They run quite a bit of trick plays,” said Ejizu. “Also, their receiving core are athletic guys who ill go up and get the ball. So far they’ve at one point led in every game they’ve played and have had a chance to win it. They are a tough football team.”

The game will be Saturday, Oct. 12 at 4 p.m. in St. Joseph.