Stephen Whitaker / The Paisano
The Roadrunners concluded their football spring practices on Sunday, April 14 with their third annual UTSA Football Fiesta Spring Game.
About 2,056 people were in attendance, including fans as well as members of the 2014 recruiting class, at Dub Farris Stadium.
Quarterbacks Eric Soza and Zach Conque led the offense with 309 passing yards. Conque outshined Soza during the game, throwing for 181 yards with one passing and one rushing touchdown.
The highlight of Conque’s afternoon occurred in the first quarter when he threw a 60-yard touchdown to wide receiver Kenny Bias for the first score of the game. “From the first practice to now, 15 practices deep, I’ve taken advantage of the reps and really learned,” said Conque. “I’m gonna make mistakes, but today I felt really comfortable in the offense.”
Soza had a decent day; he threw one touchdown and accumulated 128 passing yards. Soza’s big moment happened at the end of the game when he threw a 51 yard touchdown pass to Josiah Monroe.
Even though Soza had a sub-par day, he was satisfied with the team’s performance. “There was some good, some bad but that’s why we don’t play for another couple months. Defense played well, offense had our times but we can always improve, that’s what we’re planning on doing.”
Wide receiver Kam Jones was given the bulk of touches. Jones led the team in rushing with 39 yards and a touchdown. Jones also caught three passes for 22 yards. “Coach said he wanted to get me more touches as the spring went on. Today, the offense opened up and I got about five or six,” said Jones.
“He [Jones] needs to be involved, when he touches it, it can get exciting. He can run it, he can throw it and he can catch it. He’s the kind of agile guy you love to have,” said Head Coach Larry Coker.
Although the offense scored 31 points, the defense was the most impressive. The defensive secondary showed great improvement from last season. “We’re a lot better on defense especially in the secondary. The corner play is a lot better. I’m excited about where we are going,” said Coker.
Linebackers Jens Jeters and Steven Kurfehs led the team with 18 combined tackles. The defense took advantage of mistakes made by both quarterbacks and collected three interceptions.
Now that the spring practices have concluded, the ‘Runners will focus on their upcoming season in Conference USA.
The Roadrunners are still a work in progress. When asked if the team was Conference USA ready, Coker said “no, but we better get ready. Now it’s all about us. We got to have great work in the weight room; we got to have a great opening game for one. The main thing is to get stronger and more confident. I think with the eight wins last season, we left the season with a lot of confidence, but now we got to build off that in the offseason.”