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Scott Puryear, Sports Information Director
Oklahoma Panhandle State University
P.O. Box 430, Goodwell, OK 73939
580-349-1340 scottp@opsu.edu

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**For Immediate Release**
Western New Mexico Tops OPSU 27-9
- by Scott Puryear of Aggie Sports on 10/29/05
 
Goodwell, OK - The Mustangs of Western New Mexico topped Oklahoma Panhandle State, 27-9, here on Saturday. Both teams are part of the Independent Football Alliance (IFA). The Aggies did not play badly, but turnovers and a pair of placekicking miscues changed the complexion of the game.

OPSU started off well enough, and thanks in large measure to a great 49-yard run by James Stephens, the Aggies had a nice opening drive. However, OPSU could not translate their efforts to the scoreboard as Hal Rogers missed a 26-yard field goal attempt. The Mustangs got on the board with two minutes left in the opening quarter on a Lateef Azziz six-yard run and the extra point that followed.

Though starting the second period down 7-0, the Aggies still appeared to be the better team on the field. The OPSU defense played tough in the second quarter, but the Aggie “O” could only muster a 28-yard Rogers field goal and went to halftime trailing 7-3.

With just over eight minutes left in the third period, the Aggies took the lead on a one yard smash by the dependable David Daniels. After a missed extra point, the scoreboard showed the Aggies ahead, 9-7. Western New Mexico came right back with their own good drive, and after a Brett Spence five yard TD run and Kevin Hughes’ PAT, the Mustangs were back on top, 14-9.

In the fourth quarter, the Mustangs tacked on a pair of touchdowns and one PAT to give the visiting team the 27-9 victory. Though the Aggies had the edge in most statistical categories, including first downs (19-16) and total net yards (339-259), their season record fell to 1-9.

Daniels led the Aggie rushing with 86 yards in 17 tries and the touchdown, and Stephens picked up 84 yards in just nine tries. Orlando Vargas carried the ball only once, and it was a nice 16-yarder. Freshman Gabe Gillmore led the OPSU passing attack with six completions in 11 attempts for 113 yards.

Clifford Dean, the IFA’s Most Valuable Defensive Player last season, heard his name over the public address system several times. The senior linebacker was in on ten tackles (including two tackles for losses and a quarterback sack) plus he broke up a pass. Ranoaldo Davis was in on nine tackles, one a quarterback sack. Jeborric Evans (All-American last season), had eight solo tackles and made an acrobatic interception that stopped a Mustang drive near the goal line.

With the win, Western New Mexico upped their record to 5-4. The Aggies will end their season next Saturday at home in the inaugural EPIC TOUCH Bowl. Their opponent will be Truman State University (1-9).

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