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Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Crucial field goal miss results in loss for the Brahmas

San Antonio will return to St. Louis in XFL Conference Championship
Courtesy of UFL San Antonio Brahma

The San Antonio Brahmas dropped their final regular season game to the St. Louis Battlehawks in a close 13-12 loss Saturday afternoon at the Dome at America’s Center.

Faced with the blaring crowd noise and broken helmet communications, the Brahmas could not find success, losing the opportunity for home field advantage ahead of next week’s conference championship.

“In the first half, the crowd noise and all of that stuff certainly affected us,” coach Wade Phillips said. “We’ve earned the right to be in the playoff and are excited for next week.”

Facing pressure, quarterback Chase Garbers stepped up to throw to tight end Alize Mack but the tipped pass fell into the Battlehawks defenders’ hands for the interception. Offensive struggles continued, pinned on the 2-yard line, running back Morgan Ellison was hit low, fumbling the ball for a second consecutive turnover.

In prime field position, Battlehawks quarterback A.J. McCarron was picked off by safety Teez Tabor to give the Brahmas the ball back. Backed up on their own seven, the Brahmas could not muster anything on offense, going four and out.

Back in the red zone, McCarron connected with receiver Steven Mitchell Jr. for a wide open 22-yard touchdown to give St. Louis a 7-0 lead. On a long 13-play drive, the Battlehawks added to their lead with a 32-yard field goal by kicker Andre Szmyt.

Quarterback Quinten Dormady entered the game after Garbers went down with an apparent injury. The Battlehawks forced a quick three and out to bring out the San Antonio kicking unit. Kicker Ryan Santoso’s 59-yard attempt was blocked by the Battlehawks to close the half.

Dormady connected with receiver Jontre Kirklin for two 20 plus yard receptions, bringing the Brahmas back in scoring position. Ellison stumbled in for a 6-yard touchdown to give San Antonio its first points on the board. The Brahmas trailed 10-6 after a failed two-point attempt.

A large 41-yard kickoff return by the Battlehawks brought them into Brahmas territory, but another defensive stop by San Antonio made the Battlehawks attempt their second field goal. Szmyt’s 41-yard attempt was good, adding to St. Louis’ lead.

The Brahmas responded with their own score when Dormady found Kirklin for a 37-yard catch and run touchdown to bring San Antonio within one. Going for the two point try to take the lead, Dormady found receiver Marquez Stevenson but a super challenge by St. Louis overturned the call.

A quick four and out by the Battlehawks left Dormady and the offense with 50 seconds to drive down the field. Two large gains brought the Brahmas just shy of field goal range but with no timeouts left, Santoso walked out for his second attempt. To win the game, Santoso’s 51-yard field goal was unsuccessful, giving the Brahmas their third loss of the year

The Brahmas defense sacked McCarron three times and picked him off once. Dormady came in the wake of Garbers’ injury, finishing the afternoon going 15-27 for 188 yards and a single touchdown. Kirklin led the offense with 127 yards on ten targets for a touchdown, his longest reception being 37 yards.

“We just need to regroup, perfect the fine details at practice and come back out swinging next week,” Kirklin said.

The Brahmas will face the St. Louis Battlehawks again in the XFL conference championship 6 p.m. Sunday at Dome at America’s Center.

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About the Contributor
Nicholas Kingman
Nicholas Kingman, Assistant Opinion Editor
Nicholas is a freshman CAP student who joined The Paisano in Summer 2023. He is a San Antonio Native and is excited to stay home for another year.

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