STEPHENVILLE – No. 3 Tarleton’s season came to an end in the first round of the NCAA Division II playoffs with a 23-16 loss to No. 21 Texas A&M-Commerce at Memorial Stadium.
After going 11-0 in the regular season and claiming back-to-back Lone Star Conference championships, the Texans close the book on the 2019 year and their last season in NCAA Division II at 11-1.
The No. 2-ranked offense and No. 4 scoring team in the country was held to a season-low 16 points and only one touchdown. Tarleton only managed 330 yards of offense – including just 56 rushing yards – while A&M-Commerce put up 421 yards.
The lone Texan touchdown of the game came on Ben Holmes’ 23-yard pass to Camron Lewis in the first quarter that gave the Texans their only lead of the game at 10-7. Holmes finished the game 21-of-44 passing for 274 yards and a score. Lewis posted a game-high eight receptions for 103 yards.
A&M-Commerce (9-2) only had two touchdowns of their own but added four field goals in the process. The biggest touchdown of the game came in the third quarter on a 9-yard run by Jemal Williams to make it at two-score game at 23-13 going into the fourth quarter.
The Texans had their chances as they had a long touchdown called back on a penalty and couldn’t convert on a pair of field goal opportunities. The Texans also had to punt a season-high five times.
Jai Edwards led the Texan defense with 13 tackles (10 solo) and 3.5 tackles for loss. D.J. Harris also posted double-digit tackles with 10.
Tarleton’s most successful run in university history over the last two years features a 23-2 record with a pair of Lone Star Conference championships.