The Emporia State football team will be making its seventh post-season appearance in the last ten seasons when they take on Southeastern Oklahoma State in the Farmers Bank & Trust LIVE UNITED Bowl. The rematch of last year's bowl will kick off at 12 noon on Saturday, Dec. 3 at Razorback Stadium in Texarkana, Ark.
Emporia State is 8-3 on the year and ranked No. 24 in the American Football Coaches Association National Poll. They lead the MIAA in total offense and are fourth in scoring offense. Quarterback Braden Gleason is sixth in the nation in points responsible for, eighth in passing yards and touchdowns, and ninth in total offense. Defensively, ESU is third in the MIAA in total defense and fourth in scoring defense. The 21.2 points allowed per game are the fewest by the Hornets since 2003. Linebacker Dawson Hammes is fifth in the MIAA in total tackles. On special teams, ESU is second in the MIAA in net punting while Ross Brungardt is 13th in the nation in punting. Caden Dodson has hit 31 of 32 PATs and seven of eight field goals in the last seven games.
Southeastern Oklahoma State is 6-5 on the year. They are third in the Great American Conference in total offense and rank third in scoring offense. Daulton Hatley leads the GAC in passing yards and touchdown passes and is ranked third in the league in total offense. Defensively, Southeastern is ranked third in total defense and sixth in scoring defense. Maalik Hall leads the GAC in sacks and is ninth in the conference in tackles. Trey Keats is 40 of 47 on PATs this season and has gone ten of 13 on field goal attempts.
Teams will arrive late afternoon on Thursday, Dec. 1 at their hotels within the Texarkana Arkansas Crossroads Business Park. During their time in Texarkana, teams will participate in local community events by visiting local United Way agencies to lend a helping hand. Both teams will practice on Friday afternoon and practice is open to the public.
The Jeans, Boots and BBQ Banquet will be held from 6-8 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 2 at the Texarkana, Texas Convention Center. Tickets are limited and on sale now, online only, for $25 per person at www.liveunitedbowl.com. The community pep rally will follow the banquet at 8 p.m., also scheduled at the Texarkana, Texas Convention Center. Admission to the pep rally is free and the community is encouraged to attend.
Tickets are on sale now at any Farmers Bank & Trust location, any Mil-Way Federal Credit Union location, the Texarkana Chamber of Commerce, or the United Way of Greater Texarkana office, or can be purchased online at www.liveunitedbowl.com. Student tickets are not available online and must be purchased at any of the above locations or at the gate. Tickets are $10 for adults and $4 for students. The benefactor of this event is the United Way of Greater Texarkana. Parking lot gates open at 8 a.m. for tailgating. Stadium gates will open at 10 a.m.
Emporia State is 9-9 all-time in the post-season with a 4-3 record in bowl games, a 2-3 record in the NAIA Playoffs and a 3-4 record in the NCAA Division II Playoffs.
Good luck Hornets!
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