When Cal Poly head coach Tim Walsh addressed his team following a 49-14 loss to Sacramento State in the final home game of the season he talked about effort.
“I think up until this time, in spite of our record, we had battled in every game. Tonight we didn’t battle,” Walsh said after the game. “I don’t think we played well in any phase of the game. I take responsibility for that.”
Big plays and mistakes
It didn’t take long for Sacramento State (6-4, 5-2 Big Sky) get its offense going. On the third play of the game Sacramento State quarterback Kevin Thomson, who returned to the field after missing three games due to injury, found a wide open Jaeln Ratliff for a 76-yard touchdown and the Hornets were off and running.
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Later in the quarter, Sacramento State turned a blocked field goal into a long return for touchdown. A couple series after that a fumble by Cal Poly quarterback Jake Jeffrey bounced into the endzone and Sacramento State scooped it up for the score.
Another long touchdown pass by Thomson right before half made it 28-0 Hornets.
Meanwhile, Cal Poly (1-9, 1-6 Big Sky) had less than 100 yards of total offense in the first half and finished the game with 289 total yards.
It was 49-0 before Cal Poly finally scored on a Broc Mortensen run with under 12 minutes to play in the fourth quarter to avoid being shut out for the first time since 1999.
Jeffrey finished the game 13-of-20 for 148 yards, much of which came when the Sacramento State starters were replaced by the second string. Thomson threw for 247 yards and three touchdowns in the game and Sacramento Sate scored three touchdowns of over 70 yards in the game.
Mohamed Passes 1,000 yards
With another 100-yard game, his sixth of the season, senior fullback Jared Mohamed the 1,000-yard mark for the season. His 125 yards on 30 carries on Senior Night game him 1,065 yards on the season to go along with four touchdowns.
Former Paso High players get some run
There was a feel-good story buried at the end of a difficult loss for Cal Poly. On the last series of the game, senior running back and Paso Robles High graduate Joshua Jeter had the first three carries of his college career. Walsh held Jeter up as an example of the effort he wants to see from the rest of his team.
“He gets out to practice and all he does is give it everything he has every single day,” Walsh said of the 5-foot-5 Jeter. “He comes out there and runs scout team offense and he loves it. He loves being part of the Mustang team and family.
“It meant a lot to me to put him in the football game whether we were winning or losing because he is truly a Mustang that earned it, he earned the right to get out there and have three carries in his college career and it’s something that he will probably treasure the rest of his life,” Walsh said.
Christian Erickson, another Paso Robles High graduate and 2016 Tribune County Football Player of the Year, also got a few carries in the end of the game for Sacramento State replacing running back BJ Perkinson who had 164 yards rushing and a touchdown on seven carries. Erickson had seven carries for 23 yards against Cal Poly including a pile-moving run reminiscent of his playing days with the Bearcats. Erickson now has 14 carries for 78 yards on the season.