Aggies cruise to 38-7 win over Montana St

Stephen McGee rushed for 121 yards and 2 touchdowns and passed for 112 yards to lead No. 25 Texas A&M to a 38-7 win over Montana State on Saturday night in College Station before an Kyle Field Aggie partisan crowd of 79,438.

Stephen McGee rushed for 121 yards and 2 touchdowns and passed for 112 yards to lead No. 25 Texas A&M to a 38-7 win over Montana State on Saturday night in College Station before an Kyle Field Aggie partisan crowd of 79,438.

Montana took the opening kickoff and mounted a 13-play, 83-yard drive, scoring first on an 8-yard pass from Bobcat quarterback Jack Rolovich to Elliott Barnhart. The extra point by Eric Fisher gave Montana State a surprising 7-0 lead with 9:44 left in the first quarter.

The Aggies responded to the challenge by scoring 38 straight points to improve to 5-0 in home openers under coach Dennis Franchione.

Kerry Franks took the Bobcat kickoff and returned it 44 yards to the Montana State 47-yard line. The Aggies drove to the Montana State 17-yard line before having to settle for a Matt Szymanski 34-yard field goal to cut the Montana State lead to 7-3 with 7:13 left in the first quarter.

After forcing a Bobcat punt, Stephen McGee raced 65 yards on an option keeper to put the Aggies in front. The extra point by Matt Szymanski gave the Aggies a 10-7 lead with 2:14 left in the 1st quarter.

After a series of punts, A&M used a 34-yard run by Michael Goodson to drive 70 yards in 8 plays, with Jorvorskie Lane scoring on a 2-yard dive and Szymanski's extra point gave the Aggies a 17-7 lead midway through the second quarter.

Mike Goodson breaks away.
Mike Goodson breaks away from Montana State's Kory Austin during the first half. (AP Photo/Paul Zoeller)

Late in the first half, Bobcat quarterback Jack Rolovich completed a 50-yard pass to Josh Lewis to move down to the A&M 12-yard line. Aggie defensive end Chris Harrington ended the Bobcat drive when he sacked Jack Rolovich, forcing a fumble that was recovered by Aggie defensive end Amos Gbunblee. After an Aggie punt, Montana State drove to the Aggie 29-yard line before the first half clock ran out.

Kerry Franks returned the opening kickoff of the second half 38 yards to give the Aggies good field posision at their 43-yard line. After 3 straight pass completions from Stephen McGee to tight end Martellus Bennett totalling 33 yards, Mike Goodson jumped over one player at the line and danced his way 18 yards for a touchdown to finish that drive and make it 24-7 early in the third quarter.

Arkeith Brown breaks up a pass,
Arkeith Brown breaks up a pass intended for Montana State's Derek Green during the second half. (AP Photo/Paul Zoeller)

Montana State used an Aggie punt return fumble and a long drive to twice move deep into Aggie territory in the third quarter, but on both occasions missed field attempts. The Aggies drove 75 yards on 12 plays and Stephen McGee scored on the 3-yard run on the second play of the 4th quarter to give the Aggies a 31-7 lead.

Jerrod Johnson came on in backup quarterback duty for the Aggies with three minutes left in the game, and led the Aggies on a 45-yard scoring drive, throwing a 17-yard touchdown pass to Terrence McCoy to give the Aggies the final 38-7 score line with 1:20 left in the game. Marquis Carpenter intercepted a Montana State pass to end the game.

For the Aggies, Stephen McGee rushed for 121 yards and 2 TDs (65 and 3 yards) on 9 carries, while completing 10 of 20 passes for 112 yards. Michael Goodson rushed for 65 yards and one TD (34 yards) on 10 carries and caught 2 passes for 29 yards. Jorvorskie Lane rushed for 40 yards and 1 TD (2 yards) on 10 carries. Earvin Taylor caught 3 passes for 36 yards and tight end Martellus Bennett caught 3 passes for 33 yards.

On defense, linebacker Mark Dodge led the Aggie defense with 14 tackles. Defensive end Chris Harrington had 9 tackles, 1 sack, 1 forced fumble, and 1 pass breakup. Safety Alton Dixon recorded 10 tackles, whip Jordan Puch 9 tackles, and safety Devin Gregg 7 tackles. Linebackers Matt Featherston and Misi Tupe each had 6 tackles.

Montana State actually outgained the Aggies and controlled the clock, but couldn't finish drives, missing three field goals and losing a fumble deep in Aggies territory.

While the game may not have been as impressive for the Aggies as the final score indicates, this was a good season opening win for the Aggies, especially given a number of major upsets around the country.

Texas A&M (1-0) will look for improvement when it hosts Fresno State next Saturday at 2:30 pm.

Look for indepth Aggie Websider analysis of the Montana State game, and previews of the Fresno State game.

 


Box Score

                            2007 Texas A&M Football
        Montana State vs Texas A&M (Sep 01, 2007 at College Station, TX)
                    Montana State (0-1) vs. Texas A&M (1-0)
      Date: Sep 01, 2007  Site: College Station, TX   Stadium: Kyle Field
                              Attendance: 79438

Score by Quarters     1  2  3  4   Score
-----------------    -- -- -- --   -----
Montana State.......  7  0  0  0  -  7
Texas A&M........... 10  7  7 14  - 38


Scoring Summary:
1st 09:44 MSU - E. Barnhart 8 yd pass from Jack Rolovich (Eric Fisher kick)
                                                 13 plays, 0 yards, TOP 5:16, MSU 7 - TAMU 0
    07:13 TAMU - Szymanski, Matt 34 yd field goal
                                                 5 plays, 30 yards, TOP 2:31, MSU 7 - TAMU 3
    02:54 TAMU - McGee, Stephen 65 yd run (Szymanski, Matt kick)
                                                2 plays, 71 yards, TOP 0:56, MSU 7 - TAMU 10
2nd 07:48 TAMU - Lane, Jorvorskie 2 yd run (Szymanski, Matt kick)
                                                8 plays, 70 yards, TOP 3:34, MSU 7 - TAMU 17
3rd 13:20 TAMU - Goodson, Mike 18 yd run (Szymanski, Matt kick)
                                                5 plays, 57 yards, TOP 1:40, MSU 7 - TAMU 24
4th 14:47 TAMU - McGee, Stephen 3 yd run (Szymanski, Matt kick)
                                               12 plays, 75 yards, TOP 3:11, MSU 7 - TAMU 31
    01:20 TAMU - McCoy, Terrence 17 yd pass from Johnson, Jerrod (Szymanski, Matt kick)
                                                5 plays, 45 yards, TOP 1:52, MSU 7 - TAMU 38


Kickoff time: 6:05 PM   End of Game: 9:22 PM   Total elapsed time: 3:17 PM
Officials: Referee: Loueniet; Umpire: Zerr; Linesman: Neumann; Line judge: Garmond;
Back judge: Widen; Field judge: McLean; Side judge: Laurie; Scorer: Reber;
Temperature: 92        Wind: NE 14     Weather: Clear 20% rain


                                    MSU     TAMU

FIRST DOWNS...................       23       16
  Rushing.....................        5       10
  Passing.....................       18        6
  Penalty.....................        0        0
NET YARDS RUSHING.............       99      261
  Rushing Attempts............       37       35
  Average Per Rush............      2.7      7.5
  Rushing Touchdowns..........        0        4
  Yards Gained Rushing........      122      282
  Yards Lost Rushing..........       23       21
NET YARDS PASSING.............      304      129
  Completions-Attempts-Int....  26-48-1  11-23-0
  Average Per Attempt.........      6.3      5.6
  Average Per Completion......     11.7     11.7
  Passing Touchdowns..........        1        1
TOTAL OFFENSE YARDS...........      403      390
  Total offense plays.........       85       58
  Average Gain Per Play.......      4.7      6.7
Fumbles: Number-Lost..........      3-1      1-1
Penalties: Number-Yards.......     2-15     4-25
PUNTS-YARDS...................    7-257    5-226
  Average Yards Per Punt......     36.7     45.2
  Net Yards Per Punt..........     30.3     44.6
  Inside 20...................        0        2
  50+ Yards...................        1        2
  Touchbacks..................        1        0
  Fair catch..................        0        2
KICKOFFS-YARDS................    2-126    7-485
  Average Yards Per Kickoff...     63.0     69.3
  Net Yards Per Kickoff.......     22.0     45.6
  Touchbacks..................        0        2
Punt returns: Number-Yards-TD.    2-3-0   4-25-0
  Average Per Return..........      1.5      6.2
Kickoff returns: Number-Yds-TD  5-126-0   2-82-0
  Average Per Return..........     25.2     41.0
Interceptions: Number-Yds-TD..    0-0-0   1-31-0
Fumble Returns: Number-Yds-TD.    0-0-0    1-9-0
Miscellaneous Yards...........        0        0
Possession Time...............    35:43    24:17
  1st Quarter.................    11:33     3:27
  2nd Quarter.................     7:04     7:56
  3rd Quarter.................     9:16     5:44
  4th Quarter.................     7:50     7:10
Third-Down Conversions........  7 of 19  6 of 12
Fourth-Down Conversions.......   1 of 1   0 of 1
Red-Zone Scores-Chances.......      1-4      5-5
Sacks By: Number-Yards........      1-5     2-13
PAT Kicks.....................      1-1      5-5
Field Goals...................      0-3      1-1


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