Turnovers doom Mustangs in 14-0 loss

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Turnovers doom Mustangs in 14-0 loss

Post  Kevin on Mon Aug 31, 2009 2:37 pm

the original article from the Sweetwater Reporter


Turnovers doom Mustangs in 14-0 loss
Written by Ron Howell
Sunday, 30 August 2009


Friday’s season opener for Sweetwater and Burkburnett at the TSTC West Texas Sammy Baugh Classic was, at least for three quarters, a game that neither team seemed to want to win.
But in the end, it was the Mustangs’ continued inability to avoid mistakes that gave the Bulldogs a 14-0 victory and frustrated a large crowd at Mustang Bowl.
Sweetwater finished with five turnovers, three coming in the final 14 minutes, and two of them led to touchdowns which allowed Burkburnett to break a scoreless deadlock at the end of three periods.
In fact, all four of Sweetwater’s second-half possessions ended in turnovers, help-ing to spoil Craig Slaughter’s head coach-ing debut with the Mustangs. “That’s a sure way to get your butt kicked,” he noted after the game.
But Sweetwater’s defense kept the Mus-tangs in the game nearly all the way until it finally wore down from being on the field so much in the second half.
The offense, on the other hand, got into Burkburnett territory on four of Sweetwa-ter’s five first-half possessions but was un-able to score. The Bulldogs also wasted a couple of good scoring opportunies, how-ever, with two drives ending in missed field goal tries, until finally taking advantage to score early in the fourth quarter.
A fumble at the end of a pass reception gave Burkburnett the ball at Sweetwater’s 40. Quarterback Cannon Cornelius ended a five-play drive when he scored on a 9-yard run with 11:17 remaining in the game.
After Sweetwater got the ball back, the Mustangs immediately turned it over again as Burkburnett’s James Lorenzo intercep-ted a pass and returned it to the Mustang 35. From there, Cornelius capped another five-play drive with a 7-yard run.
Jackie Sanders’ kick made it a 14-0 game with 8:38 to play. Yet another Sweetwater turnover allowed the Bulldogs to take over and run out the clock with their ball-control offense that outgained the Mustangs 290-148, including 213 yards rushing.
Sweetwater’s lack of depth compared to Burkburnett was also a factor, as the Bull-dogs had 47 players to the Mustangs’ 34.
“The defense hung in there great, but we kept putting them in a bad spot,” Slaughter said. “I thought it would be fairly low-scoring and that it would be a close game. We just didn’t take advantage of our opportu-nities against a very solid team.”
Sweetwater opened the game in specta-cular fashion, as Josh Gomez fielded the opening kickoff and returned it 54 yards to Burkburnett’s 26-yard line. B.J. Walker then ran 16 yards to the 10, but consecutive fumbles and a sack pushed Sweetwater back to the 20 and Cole Rhoades had his 37-yard field goal attempt blocked.
Sweetwater narrowly avoided a safety after a 23-yard loss on the second play of the second quarter, and Burkburnett took over at the Mustang 37. The Bulldogs got it to the 18, but a holding penalty helped to stall the drive. Sweetwater took over at its 31 and immediately got into scoring range on a 58-yard halfback option pass from Ken Norman to wide receiver Jason Vause, who ran it down to Burkburnett’s 11. Three runs got it to the 4, but A.J. McCoy was stopped for a one-yard loss on fourth-and-three.
Linebacker Bo Bugarin gave the Mus-tangs another chance when he recovered a fumble at the Bulldogs’ 41 late in the first half. On third-and-5 from the 36, McCoy caught an apparent touchdown pass from quarterback Jake Lawrence, but a holding penalty wiped out the score. Vause was roughed on a punt attempt, giving Sweet-water two more chances from the 31, but both passes fell incomplete.
Sweetwater goes to Seminole this Friday.
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