Football team plays Commerce — again — Nov. 14 in playoffs

Samuel Sutton

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Don Jerry, psychology sophomore, attempts to run past the Eastern New Mexico University players during the play off game, Nov. 7, held in Memorial Stadium. During the previous week's game, Jerry was the LSC Special Teams Player of the Week. Photo by Rachel Johnson

Don Jerry, psychology sophomore, attempts to run past the Eastern New Mexico University players during the play off game, Nov. 7, held in Memorial Stadium. During the previous week’s game, Jerry was the LSC Special Teams Player of the Week. Photo by Rachel Johnson

And that’s a win. The  football team won its first Lone Star Conference playoff game of the season 26-21 in the final seconds of the Nov. 7 game against Eastern New Mexico.

Before the game, coach Bill Maskill said his main concern was beating Eastern New Mexico’s wishbone offense.

“We don’t see this offense that much. Nearly every team we’ve played this season has run a single-back formation. We have to work hard this week to keep our defense disciplined,” Maskill said.

And Sir’Vell Ford, a freshman in criminal justice and defensive back on the football team, agreed.

“We expected a close game because we beat them once before and knew that they weren’t going to just lie down and let us win,” Ford said. “It’s a target on our chest and every team out there is aiming for us.”

Daniel Laudermilk, history senior, and the team’s starting middle linebacker, agreed with Maskill about that concern.

“Coach makes us spend multiple hours to prepare for this offense. We practice against this offense every week just to prepare for this game,” Laudermilk said.

The second concern was beating Eastern New Mexico a second time. Laudermilk said it is always hard to beat a team a second time, but especially them since it is a unique offense.

Their concerns turned into struggles during the game.  Eastern New Mexico’s offense helped the team rack up 294 rushing yards, and 358 total yards for a total of three touchdowns. Kamal Cass, Eastern New Mexico’s tailback, was a big part of that success, as he ran for 197 yards and all of the team’s touchdowns.

For the majority of the game, Eastern New Mexico led by at least two points. However, the team fought their way back in the fourth quarter. Don Jerry, psychology sophomore, and the team’s tailback, ran in for two touchdowns late in the game to put the team in the lead, 26-21. Eastern New Mexico stalled on their last drive with four incompletions by their quarterback, Jeremy Buurma. Midwestern got the ball with nine seconds left, ran for a loss of two yards, and killed the clock for a 26-21 playoff victory.

While the team did win, it wasn’t pretty. An interception on offense, three touchdowns given up, and five three-and-outs nearly lost them the game.

Hagen Hutchinson, kinesiology sophomore, and the team’s quarterback, didn’t do what he wanted to do in the game either. His goal was to complete more than 75 percent of his passes and throw for at least one touchdown. He ended up completing 18 out of his 40 attempted passes, which is a 45 percent completion average, and threw for one interception with no touchdowns.

He won’t get down on himself though, as he said he will put this game out of his mind and get ready for the next one.

“At the end of the day, if we win the game, the bad stats don’t really matter. I just have to go into practice the following week, prepare better, and make sure that doesn’t happen again,” Hutchinson said.


Ford said he his excited to play against Commerce again.

“It’s revenge time and we have business to handle,” said Ford. “This game is personal so we have to get hyped for the game early.”

DiValerio said the team needs to limit its mistakes to win.

“Last time we had too many turnovers on offense and allowed too many big plays in defense. However if we play the mustang way, the way we were coached to play, I have confidence that we will win,” said DiValerio.

NEXT GAME: Texas A&M Commerce in Commerce, Texas, Nov. 14, 2:30p.m.


The Office of Student Development and Orientation is providing a 36 passenger bus for students wanting to go to the football game at Commerce.

Mario Ramirez, activities coordinator for Student Development and Orientation, said, “We did this to support our football team in the LSC playoff championship. Also a multitude of students were coming to us pressing for a ride to Commerce.”

Student Development is coordinating the effort to get fans in the stands, and they are doing so in a cost efficient manner.

Ramirez said, “The overall cost is pretty inexpensive because we are only paying for gas and the bus driver’s hourly fee.”

The ride itself is less than three hours and the ride will be free, but Ramirez said students will be required to give a refundable $5 beginning today when they sign up. Students must register by Friday, Nov. 13 at 4 p.m.

Donny Walsh, senior in education, said, “As a former athlete we need more fans at crucial away games. This is the LSC championship and a little support at the game from our student body will go a long way.”

Additional reporting by Makenzie Anderson and Daniel Laudermilk

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