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The Hawkeye

The Student News Site of University of Louisiana Monroe

The Hawkeye

The Student News Site of University of Louisiana Monroe

The Hawkeye

South Alabama mauls Warhawks in Malone

Katherine Babin

After a week of offensive highs for the season, ULM’s offense appeared to have new life moving deeper into the conference slate. 

But the Warhawks’ campaign on Saturday against South Alabama almost instantly fell apart as ULM (2-3; 1-1 SBC) added its third loss to the record in as many contests.  

South Alabama (3-3; 1-1 Sun Belt Conference) scored on its opening drive, and the Jaguar defense picked off ULM’s Jiya Wright on the second play of the Warhawks’ first drive, setting the tone for a brutal evening in Malone Stadium. By the time the dust settled, South Alabama stood tall in a 55-7 win over ULM.

“It’s been a long time since I’ve gone through a game where we’ve been whipped so bad,” ULM head coach Terry Bowden said. 

The 48-point margin of defeat is the largest loss at home in Bowden’s three-year tenure. The last time ULM suffered a greater loss in Monroe was prior to his arrival in the winless 2020 season (70-20 vs. Louisiana-Lafayette.) 

South Alabama’s aggressive offense converted on both fourth down attempts in the first quarter, and both drives resulted in touchdowns. 

“If they get stopped that might change the flow, but we throw an interception on our very first drive,” Bowden said.

ULM’s defense has been keen at creating turnovers at key moments through the first part of the season, but those efforts were nowhere to be found on Saturday.

For only the second time this season, the defense recorded no takeaways after recording 11 through the first five games. South Alabama opened the game with 31 unanswered points. The Jaguars’ nearly 600 yards of offense ensured they never sent out their punt team. 

ULM’s premiere passing attack from last week was reduced to a measly 112 yards passing. ULM’s only score of the game came on a connection between Wright and Tyrone Howell as time expired in the first half. Howell ignored the South Alabama defense and hauled in the catch from 14 yards away with Wright getting the pass off near the sideline. 

Yet, Bowden remains confident about the team’s ability to get back on course in conference play.

“That’s the thing about the Sun Belt. It’s not a conference that will be won in October; it will be won in November,” Bowden said.

ULM has a chance to bring its record back to .500 in San Marcos on Saturday against a Texas State team (4-2; 1-1 SBC) that is also trying to recover after a loss. 

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