MAGNOLIA, Ark. —
The East Central University football team fell to Southern Arkansas in its first road game of the 2013 season, 50-16, Saturday in Great American Conference action.
The Tigers (1-1, 1-1 GAC) were led by special teams, scoring a safety and a touchdown on a kickoff return. Senior LaQuan Harper tallied a total of 111 yards for the night on kickoff returns.
Fellow senior Ruben Tiller added two more points for special teams, with a safety on a point after attempt in the fourth quarter.
Sophomore Spencer Bond finished the night 11-of-31, with three interceptions and added 68 yards rushing.
Defensively junior Robert VanDeripe and sophomore Cole Weber led the team with nine tackles each.
The Muleriders (1-1, 1-1 GAC) started the scoring in the first quarter, garnering a touchdown and field goal in a minute to take a 0-10 lead.
ECU cut the lead to three (10-7), with 9:02 left in the first quarter, when Harper returned a kickoff for 94 yards.
SAU added a touchdown with 4:35 left in the first for a 17-7 advantage.
The Tigers lone offensive touchdown of the game with 2:35 left in the first quarter. Bond connected with senior Lindsey Anderson for a 41-yard pass to make the score 17-14.
The game remained 17-14 through the second quarter and into the intermission.
However, SAU came out ready to fight in the third quarter and scored two TD’s to take a 30-14 advantage.
The Muleriders added three touchdowns in the fourth quarter, while the Tigers scored just two points on a point after attempt return by Tiller, with 11:46 left in the game.
After ECU’s rushing game was strong in the opening game, the Tigers tallied just 54 rushing yards for the game and 240 total offensive yards. The Muleriders tallied 382 yards of total offense and capitalized on six ECU turnovers for the win.
The Tigers will return to Norris Field for a game against Ouachita Baptist, Saturday, Sept. 21. Kickoff is slated for 6 p.m. and it is Take A Kid To A Game Day.