Samson Evans rushed for a career-high 257 yards and a touchdown to lead Eastern Michigan to a 30-21 victory Saturday over host and heavily favored Arizona State at Tempe, Ariz.
The Eagles (2-1) became the first team from the Mid-American Conference to defeat a team from the Pac-12 in the regular season. The Sun Devils were favored by 20.5 points.
Eastern Michigan, which never trailed, built a 24-14 lead at halftime behind 307 yards of total offense in the first half. Four of the five possessions for the Eagles in the first half ended with a field goal and three touchdowns.
Taylor Powell of Eastern Michigan completed 10 of 14 pass attempts for 93 yards with an interception before leaving the game with a shoulder injury with 12:00 left in the second quarter. Austin Smith finished the half and completed four of six passes for 60 yards with a touchdown.
Smith led two touchdown drives in the second quarter, the first a 13-play, 75-yard possession that was capped by his 6-yard pass Hassan Beydoun with 8:11 left in the half to put Eastern Michigan ahead 17-7.
Arizona State (1-2) had 127 yards of offense in the first half. The Sun Devils had most of those yards in a lengthy drive (75 yards in 11 plays) that was capped by Emory Jones rushing for a 3-yard touchdown with 2:53 remaining in the half.
Smith’s 42-yard pass to Tanner Knue to the Arizona State 10 was followed two plays later with Evans’ 3-yard touchdown run with 1:12 left in the half to put the Eagles ahead 24-14.
Eastern Michigan increased its lead on Jesus Gomez’s 40-yard field goal with 7:04 left in the third quarter.
Arizona State’s Xazavian Valladay rushed for a 44-yard touchdown with 10:48 left to cut the lead to 27-21.
Valladay, who had only 16 yards on the ground in the first half, ran for 127 yards, achieving his third straight game with more than 100 yards.
Two long runs by Evans, a transfer from Iowa, set up Gomez’s 20-yard field goal with 4:24 remaining that put the Eagles ahead 30-21.
Arizona State’s last drive ended with a fumble by Jaylin Conyers in Eastern Michigan territory with 2:01 left.
–Field Level Media
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