Scores

Final

Arkansas State 17

(3-2, 1-0 Sun Belt)

Memphis 29

(2-3, 0-2 American)

2:00 PM ET, September 27, 2008

Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium, Memphis, TN

1 2 3 4 T
ARST 0 17 0 017
MEM 13 3 3 1029

Top Performers

Passing: A. Hall (MEM) - 178 YDS, 1 INT

Rushing: C. Steele (MEM) - 22 CAR, 203 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: C. Singleton (MEM) - 3 REC, 68 YDS

Memphis 29, Arkansas St. 17

Associated Press

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Curtis Steele rushed for 203 yards and a touchdown and kicker Vinny Zaccario made three field goals to lead Memphis to a 29-17 over Arkansas State on Saturday.

Charlie Jones added a pair of touchdown runs for the Tigers (2-3), who won their second straight.

The Red Wolves had won the last two games in the series on a final-play desperation pass in 2006, and a second-half rally that erased a 31-6 Memphis lead last year.

This time, the Tigers had enough of a cushion to hold off the Red Wolves (3-2), the final Tiger score coming on Steele?s 2-yard run with 2:12 left.

The Memphis defense was effective in the game, allowing Arkansas State only 124 yards in the second half and holding the Wolves scoreless. Defensive tackle Clinton McDonald recorded four sacks in the game.

Arkansas State quarterback Corey Leonard completed 11 of 23 passes for 173 yards. Derek Lawson led Red Wolves? rushers with 79 yards on 11 carries.

The Wolves led 17-16 at the half, the difference being a blocked extra point after the Tigers? second touchdown. Zaccario was doing the Tiger kicking after regular kicker Matt Reagan suffered a hip injury before the game.

Zaccario converted a 20-yard field goal in the second quarter, and added kicks of 37 and 40 yards in the second half.

Memphis, which had success with it running game last week against Nicholls State, started on the ground Saturday. Jones scored on runs of 3 and 7 yards, while Steele recorded 70 yards on the ground for the Tigers in the half.

The Red Wolves offense was stymied on the first two drives before their ground attack got untracked with Leonard?s fakes and the running of Reggie Arnold and Lawson.

Leonard opened the Arkansas State scoring with a 23-yard run, and Arnold added 9-yard touchdown.

Josh Arauco?s 33-yard field goal with 18 seconds left before halftime gave the Red Wolves the lead heading into the break, but it would be their last points.

Arkansas State, which had 145 yards rushing in the half, was limited to 83 yards through the air, most of them coming when Leonard facing third-and-10 at his own 6, connected with Arnold on a screen pass for 51 yards leading to the Wolves? second touchdown.

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Team Stat Comparison

 
ARST
MEM
1st Downs1624
Total Yards352453
Passing173210
Rushing179243
Penalties10-1035-40
3rd Down Conversions3-133-12
4th Down Conversions1-11-1
Turnovers21
Possession32:1027:50

Passing Leaders

Arkansas StateC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Leonard11/231737.501
MemphisC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Hall10/251787.101

Rushing Leaders

Arkansas StateCARYDSAVGTDLG
Lawson11797.2014
Leonard15513.4123
MemphisCARYDSAVGTDLG
Steele222039.2146
Jones8435.4213

Receiving Leaders

Arkansas StateRECYDSAVGTDLG
Arnold15151.0051
Thompkins23618.0027
MemphisRECYDSAVGTDLG
Singleton36822.7036
Jones34715.7020

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERARSTMEM
TD12:04Charlie Jones 3 Yd Run (Vinny Zaccario Kick) 07
TD06:04Charlie Jones 7 Yd Run (Pat Blocked) 013
SECOND QUARTERARSTMEM
TD14:01Corey Leonard 23 Yd Run (Josh Arauco Kick) 713
TD07:53Reggie Arnold 9 Yd Run (Josh Arauco Kick) 1413
FG03:54Vinny Zaccario 20 Yd 1416
FG00:18Josh Arauco 33 Yd 1716
THIRD QUARTERARSTMEM
FG06:02Vinny Zaccario 37 Yd 1719
FOURTH QUARTERARSTMEM
FG07:58Vinny Zaccario 40 Yd 1722
TD02:12Curtis Steele 2 Yd Run (Vinny Zaccario Kick) 1729