Panthers hold off Trojans



Michael Shipma
Sports Editor

The Troy football team gave up 519 yards of total offense en route to a 31-21 loss to conference foe Georgia State in the Georgia Dome on Friday, Nov. 27.

After tying the game at seven midway through the second quarter, the Trojans (3-7, 2-4 Sun Belt) gave up 24 straight points to the Panthers (5-6, 4-3 Sun Belt). Despite a late surge in the fourth quarter, it was too little, too late to overcome the deficit.

Senior quarterback Nick Arbuckle put Georgia State on the board first with a 12-yard touchdown pass to freshman wide receiver Penny Hart halfway through the first quarter. The score capped an eight-play, 67-yard drive.

Sophomore quarterback Brandon Silvers led Troy’s response, and at the 7:52 in the second quarter, Silvers found senior wide receiver Teddy Ruben for a 58-yard passing touchdown that brought the Trojans level with Georgia State.

It was the Panthers’ passing attack that determined the outcome of the contest, as Arbuckle completed 29 of 41 passes for 368 yards and two touchdowns. Arbuckle’s favorite target in the game, junior tight end Keith Rucker, led Georgia State in receiving, hauling in 10 receptions for 154 yards.

Arbuckle led the Panthers to 24 straight points starting late in the second quarter and continuing through the third. The score was 31-7 at the 4:45 mark in that quarter.

Senior running back Brandon Burks narrowed Georgia State’s lead with a one-yard TD run late in the third, and Silver made things interesting in the fourth quarter with another touchdown throw, but it wasn’t enough to come back against the Panthers.

Troy will play its final regular season game on Saturday, Dec. 5, when it takes on UL-Lafayette in Lafayette, Louisiana. Kickoff is scheduled for 4 p.m.

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