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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Texas State defeated by Jaguars, ineligible for bowl game

Texas+State+football+head+coach+Jake+Spavital+scans+his+playbook+in+a+game+against+South+Alabama%2C+Saturday%2C+Nov.+12%2C+2022%2C+at+Hancock+Whitney+Stadium.+The+Bobcats+lost+38-21.%26%23160%3B

Texas State football head coach Jake Spavital scans his playbook in a game against South Alabama, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, at Hancock Whitney Stadium. The Bobcats lost 38-21. 

After a devastating 31-30 loss to the University of Louisiana-Monroe that featured a missed game-winning field goal by kicker Seth Keller last weekend, head coach Jake Spavital knew that the Bobcats needed to win the rest of its schedule for bowl game consideration.
Despite the loss, one in which Texas State had a 21-point lead in the first quarter, Spavital had faith in his team for this week’s matchup against South Alabama.
“Eventually the ball is going to bounce our way,” head coach Jake Spavital said after Texas State’s 31-30 loss to ULM.
The ball, despite Spavital’s hopes, did not bounce the Bobcat’s way.
Texas State (3-7, 1-5 Sun Belt Conference) dropped Saturday’s contest 38-21 to South Alabama (8-2, 5-1 Sun Belt Conference), and is now in the midst of a four-game losing streak.
Texas State’s seventh loss on the year makes the team ineligible for its first bowl game in program history.
Spavital said before the season that it wasn’t his goal, but his expectation that the Bobcats reach a bowl game this season. But after South Alabama, a team the Bobcats beat in four overtimes last season, coasted to its eighth win of the season, Texas State will have to aim its sights toward next year’s bowl game opportunity. 
“You got to play complementary football and you got to have all three phases of the game playing well together, and we just didn’t do that,” Spavital said. “South Alabama did that a lot better than we did.”
South Alabama scored two touchdowns and a field goal in the first half, securing a 17-0 lead entering the second half.
Texas State had 27 total offensive yards in the first half, with 30 passing yards and -3 rushing yards.
The two teams traded touchdowns in the third quarter, with junior quarterback Layne Hatcher throwing his 19th of the year, to make it 24-7.
Hatcher finished his night going 24-42 for 143 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
Sophomore running back Josh Berry rushed for a five-yard touchdown early in the fourth quarter to make it 24-14. The Jaguars and Bobcats then exchanged touchdowns to make it 31-21.
South Alabama sophomore linebacker Ke’Shun Brown returned Hatcher’s ninth interception of the year for a touchdown with less than three minutes on the clock in the fourth quarter to make the score 38-21, effectively killing the hopes of a Bobcat comeback.
Berry finished with 87 yards on 15 attempts with one touchdown. His 87 yards rushing were all in the second half and was a career-high. 
“Nothing really changed in the second half,” Spavital said. “We just finally got into a rhythm of things, and the rhythm of things was we established the run game a little bit better.”
The Bobcats, whose defense has shined in moments this season, surrendered 21 points in the second half. South Alabama went a perfect 6-6 on fourth downs, however, something Spavital chalks down to poor execution.
“I thought our execution was poor on offense, with dropped balls and self-inflicted wounds. We kind of worked our way through it,” Spavital said. “And the same thing happened on defense.”
The Bobcats are now officially winless on the road for the first time since 2019.
Texas State will finish off its last two games on the schedule at home.
Next, the Bobcats will face Arkansas State at 4 p.m. on Nov. 19 at Bobcat Stadium in San Marcos, Texas.

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