April 9, 2014

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MARTIN, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin football team conducted its first scrimmage during the latter portion of practice this afternoon at Hardy Graham Stadium.

Today’s practice, which served as the 10th of 15 allotted practices and first of three scrimmages scheduled this spring, began with individual instruction and positional drills before a brief situational scrimmage took place.

The first part of the scrimmage featured 16 plays in third down situations, with the defense stopping the Skyhawk offense from converting a first down on 10 occasions.

The offense gained the upper hand in the next segment of practice, scoring three touchdowns and a field goal while trying to move the chains downfield from various starting positions.

The practice then concluded with the UT Martin offense running a non-contact two-minute drill from its own 37-yard line.

Although the offense did not turn the ball over, the swarming Skyhawk defense forced an incomplete pass or held a rushing attempt to two yards or less on 39 plays, including 12 which resulted in negative yardage. Marquis Clemons, Trey Warren, Davontay Barnett, Deantae Glover and Nicholas Dance each had solo tackles-for-loss.

The Skyhawk offense gained 260 yards on the day (154 rushing, 106 passing). Abou Toure had a monster performance with nine rushes for 111 yards and a pair of touchdowns, scampering into the end zone from 65 yards out and seven yards out. The quarterback trio of Jarod Neal, Dylan Favre and Manny Stocker combined to complete 10 passes with Neal finding William Tanner for a four-yard touchdown strike. Newcomer Tyriq Patrick led the Skyhawk wide receivers with three catches for 33 yards, including a 20-yard reception to begin the scrimmage.

On special teams, Jackson Redditt successfully booted field goals from 42, 45 and 47 yards out.

UT Martin head coach Jason Simpson was satisfied with his team’s effort on both sides of the ball today.

“Today was physical – we had some good contact,” Simpson said. “I thought for the most part that the defense got the best of the offense but the offense combated that with some big runs. Over the next five practices, we need to take the next step in expanding our knowledge, continuing to develop and polishing things up. With that said, we’re right where we need to be at this point of the spring.”

The Skyhawks return to the practice field on Thursday, April 10 before holding their annual spring game this Saturday, April 12 at 10:30 a.m. The third and final scrimmage of the spring season is tentatively scheduled for Friday, April 18.

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