Lions defense leads UNA to victory over Shorter

The Lions defeated Shorter University 45-7 Nov. 8 thanks a suffocating performance by the defense.

UNA (8-1, 5-1) dominated on both sides of the football by outgaining the Hawks in total yards 620 to 121. Shorter University was unable to get anything going through the air as they finished with zero passing yards.

“I thought that was maybe the best defensive effort we’ve had since I’ve been here,” said coach Bobby Wallace. “They were very discipline and they were fast to the football. Our defensive was physically made to face this type offense.”

The lone touchdown scored by the Hawks came off a botched snap on a Lions punt and Shorter recovered the ball in the end zone in the second quarter. In the last three years, UNA’s defense has yet to allow touchdown against the Hawks.

“Our defense played lights out,” Wallace said. “We have to get the offense and kicking game playing like that too.”

Junior running back Diamond Simmons led the Lions offense with 144 total yards and two touchdowns. Simmons busted a 76-yard touchdown run early in the fourth quarter.

Simmons said he was glad to see UNA bounce back after suffering its first loss of the season last week to Delta State University 33-28.

“In order to be the best we have to play to our best potential and I think we did that tonight,” he said.

Junior quarterback Luke Wingo finished with 351 total yards, two touchdowns and an interception. Junior wide receiver Dre Hall went over the century mark with 108 receiving yards to lead the Lions.

Junior wide receiver Lee Mayhall suffered a serious ankle injury in the second quarter and will miss the rest of the season. Junior running back Lamonte Thompson suffered a mild concussion and missed the rest of the game but could possibly return next week.

The Lions have a short week as they play at the University of West Alabama Nov. 13 at 7 p.m.

A win for UNA will give the Lions a share of the Gulf South Conference championship for the second year in a row.

“West Alabama will be the most important game we’ve played this year,” Wallace said. “Because we can share the conference championship and solidify a home playoff game with a win.”