Despite a huge bounce back performance from the offense and quarterback Josh Jones, the Braves came up short in the state of Ohio. PN File Photo/Trevon Knight
The Braves traveled to the state of Ohio in search of their first win in over a month and while their offense rebounded from two vastly underwhelming performances at home, it still
wasn’t enough to get a win against the CSU Marauders. There were some noteworthy performances from the 44-38 loss that were both impressive and debilitating.
Run defense was porous yet again:
For the third straight week the UNCP defense allowed the opposition to amass just about or surpass 200 yards of total net rushing yards, two 100-yard rushers and six rushing touchdowns.
While the defensive line tends to be strong at the point of attack, poor tackling at the second and third level of the defense have led to long runs and manageable passing downs for their opponents.
Special teams quietly made big plays:
Redshirt sophomore punter Isaac Parks once again shined at preforming his craft as he racked up 129 yards on three boots and downed two of his kicks inside of the 20-yard line.
His only punt of the second half was downed at the five-yard line and after the defense forced a quick three-and-out, the offense was set up in great field position and would score on the ensuing drive.
Redshirt sophomore defensive back Devin Jones had a nice day returning as racked up 109 yards on five kickoff returns, including a 42-yard runback to open the second half.
Pass catchers stepped up but struggle with drops:
Even though true freshman starting quarterback Josh Jones had a very efficient completion percentage of 75 in this game it could have been even higher had it not been for several drops by multiple pass catchers.
Jones wasn’t completely absolved however, as he often drifted back in the pocket and threw off of his back foot as opposed to stepping up in the pocket and planting his feet to make throws.
Pass rush was nonexistent:
After logging four sacks against Wingate the week prior, the Black and Gold’s pass rush was nowhere near as effective in this outing as they only managed to register one sack and one quarterback hurry.
Against a young offensive line, the Braves’ defensive line was expected to take advantage of their inexperience, but the Marauders found a way to neutralize the pass rush by rolling the pocket and letting their mobile quarterback throw on the run.
Running game is heating up:
After failing to eclipse 60 yards rushing in either contest of their two game homestand, the Braves ground game finally got going and surpassed the 100-yard mark for just the second time this season with 126 total net yards.
Pass protection has impressive outing:
The Black and Gold had a solid showing from their own young offensive line as they provided a relatively clean pocket for the Braves’ quarterbacks to throw and routinely gave them ample time to go throw their progressions. After allowing multiple sacks in each of their previous games this year, the unit only surrendered a single sack and one quarterback hurry to CSU.