Cowboys Shut Out Howard Payne, 56-0

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BROWNWOOD, Texas — Hardin-Simmons' came out early and took control and never looked back in a 56-0 shutout to spoil homecoming over longtime rival Howard Payne in American Southwest Conference action Saturday afternoon at Gordon Wood Stadium in Brownwood.

The Cowboys pitched their first shutout since a 14-0 win over Mississippi College in a game that was played in Hurricane Rita in Clinton, Miss. on Sept. 24, 2005. It had been 54 games since that shutout.

HSU's defense suffocated the Yellowjackets all day, limiting them to just 169 yards of total offense. HPU came in averaging 330 yards per game through the air and the Cowboys limited them to 83. HSU had 16 tackles for loss in the game.

The shut out shouldn't overshadow a very good day on both offense and special teams as well. HSU rolled up 513 yards and averaged 7.8 yards per play and the Cowboys blocked a punt for a touchdown and also recovered a fumble on the kickoff. Hsu averaged 43.7 yards on its three punts and ZaVious Robbins returned the opening kickoff 48 yards to start a big day for himself.

Robbins got the Cowboys on the board with 8:37 to play when he scored the first of a career-best three touchdowns on a 10-yard pass from Justin Feaster. The Cowboys went 80 yards in seven plays in just 2:07. HPU fumbled the ensuing kickoff and HSU scored at the 6:31 mark when Feaster found Robbins on a 7-yard touchdown pass.

HSU made it 21-0 with :41 to play in the first quarter when Feaster hit Chance McCoy on a nice 14-yard touchdown pass.

HSU forced a quick punt and Cooper Haralson blocked it and senior Braxton Oliver, making his first career start, went 12 yards for a touchdown and it was 28-0 with 14:09 to play in the half. The Cowboys scored again right before half but the 65-yard screen pass was called back for a hands to the face penalty and HSU led 28-0 at halftime.

Feaster found Robbins for the third time for a touchdown on the Cowboys' first possession of the second half, this time a perfect pass over the defense for 54 yards. Feaster ended his day on the Cowboys' next series when he hit Aaron Willman on a 16-yard touchdown pass to make it 42-0 with 4:38 to play in the third quarter.  

Feaster finished the day 17-for-27 for 252 yards and five touchdowns. Robbins finished with a career-best 162 yards on eight catches and three touchdowns. He also had a 27-yard run and a 48-yard kickoff return in the game for 237 yards of all-purpose yardage.

HSU played all 67 players that it suited up in the game and in the fourth quarter Noel Phillips scored his first career touchdown with 14:18 to play, after Oliver had intercepted a pass and ran it back to the 3-yard line at the end of the third quarter. Devin Carver closed the scoring with a 2-yard run with 3:35 to play. Grant Schur kicked the PAT, in his first varsity action. Scott Newberry was 7-for-7 on PATs as well.

Derrick Grant went over the 100-yard mark for the second straight game as he had 106 yards on just 10 carries.

Hank Hornsby had nine tackles, including two for losses and he also knocked down two passes for the Cowboys. Roy Gamboa recovered a fumble, had a sack and had three tackles for loss in the game.

HSU is now 5-1 on the year and 3-1 in ASC action. Howard Payne fell to 2-4 overall and 1-3 in league play. HSU hosts Sul Ross State for homecoming next Saturday at 2 p.m.


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Dec. 10: All times Eastern
at UW-Oshkosh 10, John Carroll 3
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at Mary Hardin-Baylor 14, Mount Union 12
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Dec. 16: All times Eastern
Mary Hardin-Baylor 10, at UW-Oshkosh 7
@ Salem, Va.
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