Offense, Defense Each Gain Momentum During Spring Scrimmage

YSU Spring Football
YSU Spring Football

The Youngstown State offense continued to show its fire power while the new-look defense continued to make strides during Saturday morning's scrimmage at Stambaugh Stadium.

It was the first major scrimmage of the spring for the Penguins and practice number seven of the spring campaign. YSU will practice No. 8 on Monday afternoon at Stambaugh Stadium.

The Penguins started the scrimmage with the ball placed on the offense's one-yard line. On the first series, Kurt Hess connected with Kevin Watts for a 20-yard gain on third-and-six from the 5-yard line. Patrick Angle hit Christian Bryan for a 13-yard gain on the next series of plays. After a defensive stop, Hess connected with Andre Stubbs on an 18-yard pass play. On the final series, Angle hooked up with Kintrell Disher on a five-yard gain on a third-and-three play.

Next the pressure was placed on the defense in the red-zone situational portion. The offense was 4-of-5 in red-zone drives with four different tailbacks finding paydirt.

On the first series, the offense picked up a first down on a fourth-and-1 at the 11 and two plays later Jamaine Cook scored on a five-yard touchdown run. In the second set of snaps, sophomore cornebacker Jimmy May stepped in front of an Angle pass in the back of the end zone to stop a drive. Jordan Thompson scored on a two-yard run, Demond Hymes took it to the house from nine yards out and on the final play, Torrian Pace scored on a fourth-and-goal from the one-yard line.

Hess led the first-team offense on a five-play 70-yard scoring drive when he competed a 34-yard touchdown pass to Christian Bryan. On the drive, Hess completed four passes for 68 yards. Angle moved the offense back down the field on the next series. He engineered an eight-play 70-yard scoring march capping it with a five-yard touchdown pass to Stubbs. On the drive he hit Kintrell Disher on a 51-yard toss.

The defense settled in and held the offense off the board for the next nine drives. A nifty leaping interception by blitzing linebacker Ali Cheaib helped steal the momentum. On a 2-and-12 from the 19-yard line, Cheaib leaped up and intercepted a pass by Dante Nania. Earlier in the drive, Nania found wide receiver Ashen Ward on a 38-yard gainer.

Two possessions later, Parnell Taylor picked off an Angle pass and returned the ball down the sidelines for a gain of more than 40 yards. The defense got sack happy the next four drives picking up five sacks, including three possession enders.

The offense picked up a field goal on its final long possession of the day. When the drive stalled at the defense's 11-yard line, David Brown came on to boot a 28-yarder.

Next YSU worked on various third-down plays. The first-team defense held the offense on two third-and-short situations before the unit, led by Hess, picked up three first downs all on passes. In the twos-vs-twos, the offense earned a first down on a 3rd-and-1 but the defense stopped the offense on the next four plays.

To end the scrimmage the offense was able to pick up two first downs thanks to some heads-up play by Thompson and run out the clock in a four-minute drill.

For the scrimmage, Hess was 10-of-15 for 121 yards and a touchdown, Angle was 11-of-19 for 137 yards, a touchdown and had two interceptions while Nania was 1-of-2 for 38 yards and one INT.

On the ground, Pace led all rushers with 47 yards on 10 attempts, Hymes had 42 yards on 10 carries, Cook had 23 yards on eight attempts and Thompson had 13 on eight carries. Kevin Watts had the longest run of the scrimmage taking a reverse for 21 yards.

Disher led the receivers with 75 yards on five catches while Jelani Berassa had five catches for 49 yards. Bryan caught four balls for 73 yards, Stubbs had three for 36 and Watts had a pair for 24 yards.

Season tickets are available by calling the YSU Athletic Ticket Office at (330) 941-1978.