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Arkansas State avenged last year’s loss to Clemson in the Penn Mutual Varsity Cup with a 50-0 win over the Tigers in Jonesboro, Ark. on Saturday. The Tigers had no answer for the dynamic and open game that the Red Wolves played.
Sione Fanagaiuiha opened the scoring four minutes into the match and Preston Weigel extended the lead to 14-0 not long after. Clemson looked to get back into the game at this point and nearly scored. However, the Tigers were called for a double move at the goal line and the Red Wolves got out of trouble. That was the closest Clemson would come to scoring on the afternoon.
Ruan Knuppel got the third for ASU and Austin Bush dotted down right before halftime to increase the lead to 24-0. Arkansas State did a good job of exploiting space out wide, with nearly all of its scores coming from outflanking the defense.
“I think we spread the ball well. We talked about it before the game, passing and handling, moving the ball a little bit,” said ASU coach Shaun Potgeiter. “I think in the previous games we put the ball on the boot a bit too often so we decided to throw it around a little bit and that worked.”
A great combination between Pedro Alavarez and Connor Cook led to the next score. While Cook made it into the score sheet on this occasion, Alvarez got two of his own later in the match to extend the lead to 43-0. Finally, Fanagaiuiha closed out the game with his second of the day.
With the first half cushion, the Red Wolves were able to run in some subs as the game went on. While Potgeiter thought his team had a great first half performance, there was a little bit of a let up in the second half. Nevertheless, he was extremely happy his team kept Clemson off the score sheet and that his side walked away with a convincing win.
“I thought it was a great first half. We stayed disciplined and stuck to our game plan. Got a little bit sloppy in the second half, lost our structure a little bit and started slipping off tackles. But generally speaking, it was a great victory,” Potgeiter added.