Troy, AL (ASU) — Troy quarterback Corey Robinson's 17-yard touchdown pass to running back Shawn Southward with 22 seconds remaining wiped out a fourth quarter Arkansas State comeback and gave the Trojans (2-2, 1-0) a 35-28 victory over the Red Wolves (1-3, 1-2) Saturday night at in Sun Belt Conference action at Veterans Memorial Stadium.
Arkansas State trailed 27-14 when Troy's Michael Taylor booted a 43-yard field goal with 14:14 remaining, but the Red Wolves scored two touchdowns in the final 10 minutes, including a 30-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Ryan Aplin to wideout Allen Muse with 50 seconds to play that gave the Red Wolves a 28-27 advantage.
The game was delayed by almost two hours by lightning when the field was cleared with 3:04 remaining in the second quarter and with Arkansas State trailing 21-7. The delay lasted one hour and forty-five minutes, and the Red Wolves were able to cut the Trojan lead to a touchdown when play resumed, then held Troy to a pair of field goals until Southward's touchdown in the waning seconds turned back the ASU rally.
Aplin finished the night with 89 yards rushing and 237 yards and two touchdowns through the air, with Muse hauling in seven passes for 119 yards and a score.
"We had a chance to be one of the few teams to come in here and get a win," said ASU head coach Steve Roberts. "We had opportunities all night. Of course it comes down to the last 50 seconds, and we did a lot of great things to get the job done, but we have some things we need to work on. But you have to give Troy credit, coming off of what they did last week, and to be able to come back and win a game like this, they have a good ball club."
Troy struck early for its first touchdown, using a 70-yard touchdown pass from Robinson to slotback Jerrel Jernigan on the Trojans first possession to jump out to a 7-0 lead less than a minute into the game.
Arkansas State answered with an 11-play, 74-yard drive to tie the score with 6:31 remaining in the first quarter. Running back Derek Lawson scored from two yards out to put the Red Wolves on the board and placekicker Bobby Zalud added the extra point to tie the game at 7-7.
Troy regained the lead when the Trojans moved 92 yards in 15 plays, scoring on a three-yard pass from quarterback Jamie Hampton to wideout Tebiarus Gill with 42 seconds remaining in the first quarter, then stretched its lead to 21-7 when running back Chris Anderson scored on a four-yard run midway through the second period.
Arkansas State came out of the lightning delay and marched 54 yards to pull within a touchdown. Running back Jermaine Robertson covered the distance in three plays, including a touchdown run of 14 yards that cut the Troy lead to 21-14 with 1:24 remaining in the second quarter.