Conway, Arkansas - The Trinity football team scored a 38-14 Southern Athletic Association victory Saturday over Hendrix (AR) College.
After a quick three-and-out by both teams, Trinity was able to get the ball in field goal range, and Jonathan Reyes put the Tigers on the scoreboard at Crafton-Faulkner Field with a 31-yard field goal with 10 minutes left in the opening quarter.
The Warriors answered two minutes later with a 77-yard touchdown bomb to take a 7-3 lead that held up the rest of the first quarter of play.
Midway through the second quarter, Evan McDowell's 20-yard run put Trinity inside the seven yard line and Wyatt Messex hit Tommy Lavine for a four-yard touchdown pass just two plays later. Following the first of his five extra points on the day, Reyes put the Tigers on top 10-7.
Messex hit Lavine for a 15-yard pass play in the final minute of the first half, then Cash Crane caught another short touchdown from Messex to give Trinity a 17-7 halftime lead.
Trinity began the second half with a huge defensive stand, which gave the ball back to the Tiger offense with decent field position. The offense was able to move the ball quickly down the field with a couple of great plays and the help of a Hendrix penalty to set Messex up with a 13-yard touchdown pass to Lavine with 10:34 remaining in the stanza to put the Tigers up 24-7.
Hendrix marched down the field for a touchdown of their own, which knocked more than five minutes off the clock. The Warriors opted for an onside kick after the score, which they were able to recover at their own 48 yard line. A few plays later, Seyi Soyebo sacked the Warriors quarterback for a 16-yard loss and forced a fumble that was eventually recovered Hendrix. The Warriors were unable to put anything together to continue the drive and were forced to punt the ball, which was blocked by Michael Edmonson and returned 30 yards for a Tiger touchdown.
Hendrix would not go down without a fight, though, and put together a strong drive that put them on Trinity's one yard line, but KaDarius Lee intercepted a pass for a touchback to keep the Warriors off the board once again.
With just over 10 minutes left in the ball game, Messex got the Tiger offense going again, connecting with Austin Bertness for a touchdown that made it a 38-14 game with just under six minutes left to play.
That proved to be the final score of the game as the teams traded three-and-outs the rest of the way.
Trinity upped its overall record to 5-3 and now stands at 4-2 in SAA action. The Tigers also won their fourth game in the last five matchups.
Hendrix dropped to 1-7 overall and 0-6 in conference play. The series is now even at 1-1, as the Warriors edged the Tigers 38-35 in last year's game in San Antonio.
Wyatt Messex passed for a career-high four touchdowns. He completed a season-best 16 passes, out of 21 attempts for 166 yards. Messex also led the game in rushing with 69 yards in his column.
Tommy Lavine tied his season high with eight receptions, picking up 80 yards and scoring two touchdowns. Lavine is now tied with Bill Hodge (1969-1972) for seventh place in career touchdowns with 22 in his column. Additionally, Lavine has 1,917 receiving yards and stands in eighth place in the career books.
Michael Edmonson led the game with 105 all-purpose yards with 61 yards on kick returns and 44 on punt returns, which included a touchdown run.
T.J. Ranizeski punted the ball four times for 162 yards, averaging a team season-best 40.5 yards per punt.
Kievan Boudreaux tied his season-high with a game-leading 13 tackles, which included 2.5 tackles for a loss.
Seyi Soyebo was effective against the Hendrix offense, posting 2.5 tackles for a loss, which cost the Warrior offense 33 yards.
The Tigers produced 348 yards of total offense with 176 on the ground and 172 in the air. Hendrix had 345 total yards with 101 rushing and 244 passing.
Trinity continues its SAA campaign next Saturday in Sherman, Texas, taking on Austin (TX) College at 1:00 p.m.