LAFAYETTE, La. (10/6/07) - Louisiana-Lafayette used three scoring drives that took less than a minute to pick up a 38-29 victory over the University of North Texas Saturday night.
The Mean Green fall to 0-5 on the season and 0-2 in Sun Belt play. The victory was the first of the season for the Ragin’ Cajuns.
A 37-yard field goal by Thomas Moreland cut the deficit to 35-29 with 2:55 to play in the game, but Tyrell Fenroy peeled off a 69-yard run to set up a 22-yard Louisiana-Lafayette field goal to seal the game.
“It’s hard, after a disappointing loss like this, on what you tell your team,” said North Texas head coach Todd Dodge. “This team has a lot of character. There are some better times ahead.”
True freshman Giovanni Vizza got the nod at quarterback for his first career start. Vizza finished the game 35-of-57 for 383 yards and three touchdowns. His 383 passing effort is the eighth most ever by a North Texas quarterback in a game.
“I am very proud of the way Giovanni performed," Dodge said. "He had some jitters to start off, but I thought he got better as the game went on.”
Vizza started off shaky, throwing two interceptions and fumbling the ball on an option pitch in the first quarter. For the first time all season, the North Texas defense forced a three-and-out on its opponent’s first two possessions. UL-Lafayette got on the board with 7:46 left in the first on a Derrick Smith touchdown catch from Michael Desormeaux. Desormeaux finished the game 10-of-20 passing 114 yard and two touchdowns, but burned the Mean Green defense for 169 rushing yards and two more scores.
The Mean Green outgained the Ragin’ Cajuns 527 to 414. Jamario Thomas led the Mean Green ground attack with 13 rushes for 64. Freshman Micah Mosley finished the game with 55 yards on 11 attempts.
Junior wideout Brock Stickler set two single-game career highs in receptions and receiving yards. Stickler pulled down nine catches for 98 yards. His single-game previous best were three receptions and 48 yards against SMU earlier in the season. Stickler also pulled down his first career receiving touchdown from eight yards out. Stickler also recorded a rushing TD when he recovered a fumble in the endzone during the second quarter.
Casey Fitzgerald and Brandon Jackson both surpassed the 100-yard mark in receiving yards. It was the second time this season for the duo to both go over the century mark.
After playing four of its first five games on the road, the Mean Green return home to Fouts Field next weekend to take on Louisiana-Monroe. Kickoff is slated for 6 p.m.