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MSSU Football Heads to ESU in Week 3 - KOAM TV 7

MSSU Football Heads to ESU in Week 3

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RELEASE FROM MISSOURI SOUTHERN ATHLETICS:

Joplin, Mo. -- The Missouri Southern football team will head west to Emporia State as the Lions will take on the Hornets in week three. Kickoff from Welch Stadium is slated for 2 pm on Saturday afternoon.

Game Information
Team Records: MSSU - 0-2, 0-2 MIAA | ESU - 1-1, 1-1 MIAA
Date: Saturday, September 17, 2016
Kick-Off: 2 pm, CT
Location: Emporia, Kan.
Site: Welch Stadium (7,000)
Series Record: The Lions lead the series at 22-19.
Coaches: Denver Johnson (1-11 at MSSU, 70-78 overall) | Garrin Higgins (104-59, 53-51 at ESU)

Media Coverage
MSSU Radio: ESPN Joplin 101.3, 103.5 FM and AM 1560; 88.7 FM KXMS - Mike McClure, Play-by-Play, Scott Boudreaux, Color
Video Webcast: http://portal.stretchinternet.com/mssu/
Live Stats: http://sidearmstats.com/emporia/football
Lions on Facebook: Facebook.com/mososports
Lions on Twitter: @mososports; @mosofootball

The Series: Missouri Southern leads the all-time series with an overall record of 22-19, including an 13-7 mark at home and 9-12 record in Emporia. Emporia has won the last four games in a row, but the teams have split the last eight meetings. Southern dominated the series early when both teams were in the NAIA, winning 12 of the first 15 matchups. In the last eight meetings between the two schools, the average margin of victory for either team has been just 12.5 points. However, four out of the eight games have been decided by a touchdown or less.

The Dish On The Hornets: The Hornets are led offensively by quarterback Braxton Marstall. He is the team's leading rusher and passer. Marstall has thrown for 335 yards on 32-58 with three touchdowns and one interception. He has also rushed for 104 yards on 22 attempts. Also running the ball for the Hornets is Antonio Brown who has 65 yards on 11 carries and a touchdown, while Denzel Strong has 56 yards on 12 attempts and a score. In the receiving corps, Justin Brown leads things with 11 catches for 105 yards and two scores, while Mitchell Foote has ten catches and 119 yards. On defense, rushing the passer is where the Hornets shine. The team has five sacks already in two games. Kole Shankie has 14 tackles, including 12 solo and an interception, while Josh Monteagudo has ten stops. Tre'Vaun Ammons is one of five Hornets with a sack each. Emporia State will be back on the road next week, traveling to 14th ranked Central Missouri.

A Victory vs. Emporia State Would: stop a four-game winning streak for the Hornets. It would give the Lions and the Hornets a split of the previous eight meetings.

NFL Representation: The Lions will have two different starters on NFL rosters to start the season. Brandon Williams is a starter on the defensive line for the Baltimore Ravens, while Allen Barbre will start on the offensive line for the Philadelphia Eagles.

NFL Leaders: Brandon Williams has become a leader on the defense for the Baltimore Ravens, shoring their defensive line. Last year, the third-year pro had a career-high 52 tackles and two sacks. He was listed by many as a notable snub for the NFL Pro Bowl in 2015. Allen Barbre will be in his second year as a starter on the offensive line for the Eagles and head coach Doug Pedersen is very high on Barbre, naming him the starter prior to training camp. Barbre started all 16 games for the Eagles in 2015.

NFL Executive: Former Lion and former NFL wide receiver James Thrash is in his second season serving as the NFL and NFLPA's Appeals Officer. He hears all appeals for the NFL regarding on-field player discipline. Thrash played 12 seasons in the NFL for the Washington Redskins and Philadelphia Eagles.

Lions On Radio: The Lions will partner with ESPN Joplin this year as Southern can now be heard on three separate FM stations, as well as an AM station. ESPN Joplin will air the Lions' games on 101.3 and 103.5 FM, as well as AM 1560. MSSU's KXMS 88.7 will also simulcast the games giving the Lions a larger reach in the four-states than they've ever had.

Tough League/Region: The MIAA has two teams in the coaches top 25 this week. Northwest Missouri is 1st, while Central Missouri is 14th. The Super Region Three, which the Lions are a part of, has 9 teams in the top 25. There are 13 teams total that are either ranked or receiving votes in the poll from the region.

Lions On TV: Missouri Southern's KGCS will air every Lions home game live this year during the season. They will also re-broadcast the games on Sunday evenings at 7 pm.

Lions On The Web: All of MSSU's football games are carried live online as part of the MIAA's streaming contract with Stretch Internet. Fans can view games live by clicking on the link on www.mssulions.com.

New Coaches: Bill Bleil (offensive line) and Darius Hart (defensive line) will join the Lions this year on coach Denver Johnson's staff. Bleil comes to Southern from the University of Rhode Island, while Hart previously coached at Trinity Valley Community College.

Team Stats Rankings: The Lions, as a team rank third nationally in blocked punts, while ranking 16th and 17th in fewest penalties and fewest penalty yards. The team ranks 37th in fumbles recovered.

Individual Stats Rankings: Scott Lathrop ranks 11th nationally in receptions per game, while TJ Fleeton ranks 14th in completion percentage. Travel Smith is 14th in fumbles recovered, while Romel Hill and Trevor Plafcan rank 18th in forced fumbles.

Forcing Turnovers: The Lions forced three turnovers (two fumbles and one interception) last week against Missouri Western.

Safety First: The Lions forced a safety against Missouri Western last week after blocking a punt out of the end zone. It wsa the first time since 2012 the Lions have had a safety.

Call Me A Hall Of Famer: Allen Barbre will go into the Missouri Southern Athletics Hall of Fame this year. Barbre was a multiple All-American offensive lineman in his four-year career for the Lions and is now a starter with the Philadelphia Eagles.

Expanded Roster: Last season, the Lions carried between 80-90 players on their roster and that provided depth issues for the team. This year, Southern has between 130-140 players, much more to the liking of head coach Denver Johnson.

Record Setter: TJ Fleeton tied his own school record this past week as he completed 36 passes against Fort Hays. He tied the record he had previously set last season, ironically against FHSU.

Welcome Back: Southern welcomed back a pair of former starters to the lineup after both had sat out last year with an injury. Lars Lindquist and Scott Lathrop are both back, but both are playing different positions. Lindquist has moved to the offensive line after serving as a starter on the other side, while Lathrop will move from quarterback to receiver.

Weather Report: The weather report for the Emporia area on Saturday calls for partly cloudy conditions and a high of 78 degrees with a 30 percent chance of precipitation

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