No. 6 Missouri Western scored three touchdowns in less than five minutes to start the third quarter and defeat the Fort Hays State Tigers 52-21 Saturday night at Spratt Stadium in St. Joseph. The defending MIAA champion Griffons improve to 4-0 overall and 3-0 in the MIAA. The Tigers fall to 0-4 both overall and in conference play with all four losses coming to teams ranked in the AFCA top-25.
Chris Brown Postgame Interview
The Griffons drove 75 yards on 11 plays on the first possession of the second half. The Tigers gave the ball back to Western at the 1-yard line when punter Cameron Owens slipped near the goal line. One play later Rapheal Spencer would score the first of his two touchdowns to push the MWSU lead to 35-14. Fort Hays State’s Zach Gaughan mishandled the ensuing kickoff giving Western the ball at the Tiger 29. Three plays later Derek Libby hauled in a 17-yard pass and Missouri Western had a 42-14 lead with 10:39 to play in the third quarter.
The Tigers grabbed the early lead, driving 70 yards in 12 plays and scoring on a Treveon Albert six-yard TD pass to Edward Smith for their first, first quarter points of the season. The lead would be short-lived as Missouri Western’s Thomas Dominic returned the ensuing kickoff 96 yards for a touchdown.
Western grabbed the lead early in the second quarter on Stephon Weaver five-yard touchdown catch. The Tigers answered with an 11-play drive that took them deep inside MWSU territory, but an illegal chop block penalty took a touchdown off the board then Drew O’Brien missed a 52-yard field goal attempt. The Griffons would score on a two-yard run from Thomas to go up 14 points. The drive was kept alive by a fake punt near mid field.
The Tigers closed the gap to 21-14 at the half. Following a Justin McPhail interception at the Griffon 48, Albert hit Tanner Hageman on a 10-yard touchdown pass with 0:08 to play in the second quarter.
Albert would complete 23-of-39 passes for 183 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Andre Smith rushed for 71 yards on 16 carries. Albert added 42 yards on 13 carries. Keaton Callins had nine receptions for 85 yards.
The Tigers return home Saturday (Oct. 5) to play William Jewell in their homecoming game at 7pm.