Defense Keys 38-7 Homecoming Win for Evangel over Graceland

Defense Keys 38-7 Homecoming Win for Evangel over Graceland

The Basics
Score: Evangel 38, Graceland 7
Records: Evangel (2-3); Graceland (1-5)
Location: Ozark, Mo. | Tiger Stadium
Box Score

OZARK, Mo. – Five takeaways by the Evangel University defense helped lead the Crusaders to a 38-7 Homecoming victory over Graceland on Saturday in Heart of America Athletic Conference crossover football action.

Evangel scored 38 unanswered points aided by three interceptions and two fumble recoveries. The Crusaders also scored once on defense as Malachi Cobb returned an interception 21-yards to help push Evangel to a 31-7 lead late in the third quarter.

Graceland scored first after both teams were held scoreless in the first quarter. The Yellowjackets marched 63-yards in just 1:50 to put the first score in the end zone.

However, Evangel quickly tied the game after two long runs from Darrius Lee set up a 1-yard dive into the end zone for Terry Robinson.

The Crusaders – who started four dives in Graceland territory – took the lead for good after an interception gave Evangel the ball with 4:06 left before halftime. Evangel marched 85-yards in just six plays as Zayne Kyser scored from 3-yards out to put the Crusaders up 14-7.

Evangel would score three times in the third quarter with the first coming from a 27-yard pass and catch from Zeke Kuyawa to Brady Collier. Collier found the corner of the end zone to put Evangel on top 21-7 with 9:33 left in the quarter.

After a 39-yard Derek Roberts field goal and Cobb's pick-six, the Crusaders scored with 2:04 left on a 1-yard touchdown plunge from Devin Cochran.

The Crusaders rushed for 268 yards as three running backs scored touchdowns. Cameron Hardesty was 5-of-9 for 47-yards before leaving the game as Kuyawa went 4-of-6 for 49-yards and a touchdown. Anthony Riley led Evangel with 14 carries for 70 yards while Kyser carried 13 times for 59 yards and the one score.

Defensively, Athanie Leeviraphan and Micah Daniels also recorded interceptions to join Cobb.

The Crusaders finished with five total sacks as Andres Moeller, and Triston Shepherd led the team with six tackles each. Moeller added 1.5 sacks, 2.5 tackles for a loss and a forced fumble.

Evangel opens Heart South Division action next Saturday at Central Methodist. Kickoff from Fayette, Missouri is scheduled for 1 p.m.

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