May 12, 2012
DAVIS, Calif. - The UC Davis football team completed its spring practices with the annual Spring Game, as the Gold team edged the Blue team in a 13-7 final score on Saturday at Aggie Stadium.
The defense controlled the majority of the action, hauling in four interceptions in the first half as the Gold team took a 7-0 advantage at the intermission. A blocked field goal resulted in another touchdown for Gold to end the third quarter before the Blue team put together a scoring drive as time expired in the scrimmage.
"I thought the defense played very well. During most of the spring the offense has been ahead of the defense but the defense came to play today," said head coach Bob Biggs. "The defense tackled well and flew around the field. The defensive line and linebackers in particular played well. Spring games typically go like this because the teams know each other so well and know the formations."
The first two quarters were standard 15 minute periods, followed by a 12 minute third quarter and 10 minutes in the final frame.
Quarterbacks Randy Wright and London Lacy split snaps under center, leading the No. 1 offense on the Blue team. The Gold team featured the No. 1 defense and was led by Austin Heyworth and Justin Nunes in the QB spot.
The defense started with three consecutive three-and-outs held the offense scoreless for 12 straight possessions.
Heyworth put together the only scoring drive of the first half, traveling 75 yards on eight plays to light up the scoreboard and give the Gold team a 7-0 lead. Ryan O'Holleran capped off the drive with a 15-yard touchdown reception from Heyworth at the 7:40 mark in the second quarter.
Byron Gruendl, Hunter Pahl, Earnest Sayles and Phillip Thrappas each managed interceptions for their respective defenses.
Colton Schmidt recorded five combined punts for both teams in the first half, averaging 49 yards per punt with a long of 62 yards.
The biggest play of the second half came on a blocked field goal attempt, as the Gold team returned the block 72 yards for a touchdown. Steven Pitts knocked down the attempt before Hunter Pahl recovered with a head of steam and ended in the end zone, putting the Gold team on top 13-0.
The scrimmaged ended with a final drive for the Blue team. Wright led an eight play, 65-yard charge to put the Blue squad on the board. Marquis Nicolis broke free for a 11-yard touchdown run while Wright had three completions and a 20-yard run on the drive.
Lacy led the Blue team, completing 12 passes on 21 attempts for 92 yards while Wright finished 8 of 17 for 83 yards. Heyworth had a game-high 95 yards and one touchdown, completing 8 passes on 17 attempts.
Nicolis was the leading rusher for the game with 48 yards on 11 carries while Dane Turner collected six receptions for 68 yards.
The defense also posted 10 tackles for losses, led by Gruendl's six solo stops and one tackle for loss.
"This is what spring ball is about. We were able to teach a lot and give our young players a lot of opportunities," continued coach Biggs. "We were able to see how everyone performs in game situations and see who is ready and who is not. We'll go back and evaluate now and take it from there."