Momentum. (mō-mĕn'təm) : n. Impetus of a nonphysical process, such as an idea or a course of events
Going into the game Saturday afternoon, your UC Davis Aggies undoubtedly showed great momentum. Fresh off of exciting victories over San Jose State and South Dakota, our beloved football team firmly believed that they could defeat the impressive but unproven University of Southern Alabama Jaguars. The problem is that they didn't exactly play as such for much of the game...
It might have just been me, tired after an exciting Friday night as a college freshman in UCD, but I felt like for the first quarter the Aggies were extremely sluggish and played with no motivation. The momentum they carried, the innate idea that they could defeat any team they cross paths with which was placed into the minds of the players after the last two football games, seemed to just not exist. Sure, USA is undefeated. It's more than fair to say their team is more athletic, has more experience that the youthful Ag's, and was expected to win the game from the get-go; but at the start of the game our football team played as if they had no incentive to be on the field.
The Jaguars scored on their first two drives, putting the Aggies into an early 14 point hole. All air was sucked out of the crowd, and I'll be the first to admit I nearly gave up hope on this game. The UC Davis defense stepped up in the second quarter, and slowly but efficiently started to mount a comeback. Rain started to pour halfway through the second quarter (which by the way soaked the notes on the game I was taking), and despite the Aggies clawing their way back into the game, more than half of the stadium vacated prior even to the half.
Halftime came and went, (Batman and Superman in Davis?), and the third quarter was essentially a defensive battle. Davis scored to go ahead 21-14, something thought impossible just a couple hours prior when USA was beating up on the team. Momentum gained. The Jaguars tacked on a field goal in the fourth to cut the lead by a small margin, then ripped the hearts out of Davis football fans when University of Southern Alabama receiver Courtney Smith caught a go ahead score with less than 6 minutes left in the game. Momentum lost. Fumble Recovery with 1:53 left in game, followed Credick 22 Yard Reception to place the ball on Southern Alabama's 17. 3 seconds left in game, Sean Kelley(spoiler alert : he is now known to me forever as Scott Norwood) lines up to kick a game tying field goal. With the entire stadium holding its collective breathe, the kick sails into the air and....is wide right.
With a 3-4 record and back again under .500, lets hope the momentum of the end of this game doesn't carry on to next week when your Aggie's take on Southern Utah once again at home.
- Chris Emmett