UTSA’s Comeback Win vs. Old Dominion

UTSA's Comeback Win
UTSA's Carlos Strickland, right, catches a touchdown pass covered by ODU's Joe Joe Headen to tie ODU in the fourth quarter on Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019. (Photo courtesy Steve Earley/The Virginian-Pilot)

In what has been a season full of ups and downs, UTSA continues to find a way to win games. On Saturday, UTSA’s comeback win vs. Old Dominion was mounted by a fourth-quarter comeback en route to a 24-23 victory over the Monarchs. This win would pave the way for UTSA’s fourth win of the season. This total surpasses all of their wins in the previous season by one. With three tough games remaining, it will be interesting to see if UTSA can get up to .500 or even better.

UTSA’s Comeback Win vs. Old Dominion

With a win overall Old Dominion, UTSA now sits in third place in Conference USA West. This is something they failed to do all of last season. However, they have slowly found ways to win games. After losing three straight at the beginning of the season to Baylor, Army, and North Texas, UTSA has been able to get a victory every other game. This shows the team’s resiliency, unfortunately, it also shows some inconsistencies. Nevertheless, UTSA earned a much-needed win not only for the team but also for the future Frank Wilson at UTSA.

Wild Comeback

It has been noted that when UTSA is down in a game, they rarely come back. The Roadrunners seemed to thrive off the pressure in this case. UTSA was losing 23-10 entering the fourth quarter. The only ‘Runners highlight of the game had been Sincere McCormick’s opening drive 46-yard touchdown run. They waited almost three whole quarters to score another touchdown. But they got the ball rolling and they could not be stopped. The Roadrunners needed a lot of help from the offense. However, they got just as much help from the defense. The UTSA defense only allowed a field goal in the second half of play. Compared to the 14 points the offense put up.

The fourth quarter was the Lowell Narcisse and Sincere McCormick show. It seemed as if they traded off big plays eventually leading to the team’s victory. The Roadrunners put together two 75+ yard drives that would cap their comeback victory. The Roadrunners went on a 14-0 run that sealed the fate of the game. This edged the Roadrunners ever closer to a 5-5 overall record.

A Dynamic Two-Headed Offense

Lowell Narcisse and Sincere McCormick have surely proven their worth this season. Narcisse who was merely a backup at the beginning of the season has shown his abilities to win games. While his passing accuracy is still shaky, he is very much capable of winning games for the Roadrunners. Narcisse completed 18 of his 23 passes for a 78 percent completion percentage. This unquestionably his most efficient game this season. He also passed for 240 yards and one touchdown in this game. While these statistics may not seem mind-blowing, he did what was asked of him and that’s all the Roadrunners needed.

McCormick continues to be electric when given the opportunity. The Roadrunners have won four games in which McCormick receives 12 or more carries. Against Old Dominion, McCormick had 23 carries for 137 yards and a touchdown run. He also averaged six yards per carry in this game. The fact that this freshman is not given consistent touches is difficult to understand. He produces numbers for this team game-in and game-out. McCormick has 610 total rushing yards on 109 carries this season and is averaging just above five and a half yards per carry. He also has six touchdowns in nine games. He also is the team’s second-best receiver with 15 catches for 149 yards. Carlos Strickland II is the only player who has produced more than McCormick in the passing game. Strickland has 22 catches for 232 yards and a touchdown on the year. Bottom line keep McCormick in the game.

Defense

The defense in this game started out slow but quickly picked it up in the second half. UTSA’s defense only allowed 123 yards in the third in fourth quarters of Saturday’s game. Compare this to the 288 yards allowed in the first half and it is clear UTSA dominated the second half. The defense also forced an interception and recovered a fumble. Without the defense locking down Old Dominion in the second half, UTSA would have been unable to win this game.

A Look Ahead

Next week, the UTSA Roadrunners will be playing host to the Southern Miss Golden Eagles. This match-up has UTSA as severe underdogs. They are being calculated to have a 17 percent chance to win this game next week. Southern Miss has been a force all season. They currently have a 6-3 record and are also 4-1 in conference play. This has earned them the second spot in Conference USA West standings.  Southern Miss is fresh off a game against UAB in which they throttled the Blazers 37-2. Coming off this dominant win, UTSA will have their hands full. However, it will be interesting to see if UTSA can pull off the upset victory.

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