ABILENE, Texas — Hardin-Simmons' defense shut down McMurry's Air Raid offense and ZaVious Robbins had a career day as the Cowboys beat their crosstown rivals 34-13 in American Southwest Conference action at Shelton Stadium.
Ironically, in a game that had a lot of hype built around the two starting quarterbacks, both were injured during the game. Justin Feaster injured an ankle early in the game and left for two series. He came back and had a solid game. Jake Mullin appeared to injure his shoulder on a sack by Patrick Flaherty late in the third quarter. He did not return.
The story of the game turned out to be the Cowboy defense. Roy Gamboa returned a fumble 32 yards for a touchdown on the last play of the first quarter to tie the game at 7-7. McMurry started off the game with a 10-play, 80-yard touchdown drive as Mullin scored on a 9-yard touchdown run.
From then on the Cowboy defense allowed just 141 yards in the game.
The Cowboys went on a 15-play, 76-yard drive that took 6:39 off the clock and Feaster capped it off with a 4-yard touchdown pass to Colton Brewer. Jessie Garcia's 43-yard field goal attempt at the end of the half was blocked by Roy Gamboa to make it 14-7 at halftime.
HSU came out in the second half and scored on its first possession. Feaster hit ZaVious Robbins on a perfect pass over the top for a 76-yard touchdown. McMurry immediately answered with a 38-yard touchdown strike from Mullin to R.J. Long.
Feaster came right back with a 54-yard touchdown pass to Thomas Labian to make it 28-13. HSU intercepted McMurry two times in the fourth quarter. Derrick Grant finished off a big day for him with a 16-yard touchdown run with 1:35 to play. Grant had 125 yards on 20 carries.
Feaster finished the day 23-of-37 for 297 yards and three touchdowns, but he also threw three interceptions. Robbins had a career-best 16 catches for 193 yards and a touchdown.
Mullin had a tough day when he was in the game as the Cowboys sacked him five times and he completed 23of-36 passes for 180 yards and a touchdown. He also threw just his second interception of the year. The 180 yards were also a season low.
HSU had 476 yards of total offense against the top defense in the ASC. McMurry had just 221 yards of offense on the day and had -13 yards on the ground, thanks to six Cowboy sacks. L.C. Cisneroz and Hank Horsny each had nine tackles for the Cowboys. Pat Flaherty and Garrison Hardin each had two sacks for HSU and Emmanuel Akers, Jay Wise and Caleb Christian had interceptions.
The Cowboys are now 8-1 on the year and 6-1 in ASC action. HSU has its bye week this coming week before closing the regular season with a game at Louisiana College on Nov. 13. McMurry fell to 5-3 overall and to 3-3 in league play.
HSU has beaten McMurry 23 straight times and the Cowboys retain the Wilford Moore Trophy for another year.