Football shuts down Shorter

UNA’s Lamar Smith breaks a tackle by Shorter’s DeRhyan Arnold for a touchdown in the third quarter of Sept. 29’s homecoming game.

The Lions won their eighth-straight homecoming game Sept. 29 as they shut out Shorter 41-0, UNA’s second shutout of the season.

“This is the first complete game we have played all year, and it showed,” said head coach Bobby Wallace. “Now we proved that we can do it. Now we got to do it again, and then we got to do it again. That is what championship teams do.”

Defensively, the Lions held Shorter to only 252 yards. The  Lions are now ranked 10th nationally in scoring defense and seventh in turnovers gained.

The Lions outgained the Hawks in total offense, as UNA gained 436 yards. Chris Alexander — who earned GSC honors for Offensive Player of the Week for his performance in the game — was 9-10 with a passing touchdown and 126 yards gained. Alexander also had a rushing touchdown for the first score of the game.

“We all came together,” Alexander said. “I have to thank the offensive line  — they gave me great time. My receivers made big plays for me time after time, and I think we just came together and executed.”

True freshman Diamond Simmons led UNA in rushing as he gained 123 yards on seven carries, including an 80-yard touchdown run.

The Lion defense was led by turnovers forced by Cartez Pickett, Delvin Ervin and Caleb Massey, who each had an interception during the game.

Junior Dimitri Orr led the team in tackles with five solo tackles and five assists.

“One word I can say is ‘consistency,’” Wallace said. “One let down and you will get beat. We have to have a great week of practice. That would be my biggest word of improvement: consistency.”

UNA will look to do it again Oct. 6 as they take their longest trip of the season — over 900 miles, according to Google Maps — to take on the Texas A&M University-Kingsville Javelinas.

UNA’s passing defense, ranked No. 18 nationally, will look to continue their good play heading into the game against the Javelinas, who are ranked in the top 50 in passing yards per game but is ranked No. 124 out of 150 in rushing yards per game.

The Javelinas are also ranked 94th in the nation in rushing yards given up per game, as they have allowed 156 yards per game rushing, according to

After winning their first two games, the Javelinas have lost three games in a row, including a 21-14 overtime loss to Texas A&M-Commerce Sept. 29.

The Lions are ranked No. 11 in the nation in rushing with nearly 256 yards per game rushing.

Wallace said he doesn’t have many worries about the upcoming game.

“The biggest challenge may be getting some of them on the plane that have never flown,” Wallace said.