Miners roll over UNT on senior day

Adrian Broaddus, Sports Editor

It took Sean Kugler’s Miners eight games in conference to have a true beat-down on one of their fellow league opponents. Finally, on an overcast afternoon on Saturday, Nov. 26, the Miners both rolled over North Texas 52-24 and also spoiled any hopes the Mean Green had for a bowl game.

UNT (5-7, 3-5 C-USA) needed a win to reach bowl eligibility against the Miners; however, the win-hungry Miners put up 555 yards of total offense and put all previous inconsistencies behind them to win their second game in conference.

And, a lot of the victor’s credit will be attributed to standout running back Aaron Jones. The program’s all-time leading rusher added more yards to his illustrious year as he rushed for 301 yards and three touchdowns.

After a Mean Green rushing touchdown, Jones replied with a career-long, 83-yard dash to the end zone for a touchdown. Then, he notched another long 48-yard run for a touchdown.

Mix in a Ryan Metz to Cole Freytag connection for another offensive touchdown and a blocked punt for six-points, and you get 21 unanswered points from UTEP’s end. They had a strong 31-7 lead late in the first half.

But they would not let up just yet.

Coming out of halftime, Jones took another 58 yard touchdown to the hole, and following that, tight end Hayden Plinke hauled a 72 yard touchdown for another touchdown. Jones trotted in the end zone for his last touchdown in the late fourth quarter, which capped off the game.

“These guys went out and played a great game,” Kugler said. “They didn’t do it for me, they did it for all the seniors out there.”

Jones also became the programs’ single-season rushing leader during the game with 1,713 this year.
“It felt fantastic,” Jones said. “It all started up front. You have to give all the seniors credit who fought hard.”
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