Mountaineers pick up 27-14 Senior Day victory over Monarchs


Hiatt Ellis

Redshirt sophomore wide receiver Kaedin Robinson runs across the field, attempting to get past Old Dominion senior cornerback Tre Hawkins III Nov. 19, 2022.

Ben Gosey, Reporter

App State returned to The Rock for the final time this year, picking up a 27-14 win against Old Dominion. Head coach Shawn Clark dedicated the win to the University of Virginia and the three football players who lost their lives in a tragic shooting earlier this week.

“I thought we played complementary football all day long today,” Clark said. “And our defense also played lights out.”

App State Football celebrates Hero’s Day with a pregame flyover prior to kickoff against Old Dominion Nov. 19, 2022. (Hiatt Ellis)

The Mountaineers hosted a crowd of 32,096, meaning App State had an attendance of over 30,000 for all seven home games this season, producing an average of 33,566. This marked a Sun Belt record, breaking App State’s previous record of 30,441 set in 2021. 

“Our fans expect us to win and we expect them to be there, and they have,” Clark said. “App Nation is something very special, and we appreciate what they do and it gives us that winning edge.”

Before kickoff, the Mountaineers recognized 28 seniors on the field with their families for their time with App State. The senior class is 49-15 during their time with the program, helping App State to multiple championship appearances along the way.

“It was pretty emotional, I got choked up before walking out there,” redshirt senior quarterback Chase Brice said. “Just App State and what it means to me, a place that has accepted me and a place that I’ve grown better.” 

The Mountaineers started the game on defense, forcing a quick punt by Old Dominion. After struggling with slow starts, the App State offense opened its first drive quickly, with Brice connecting with sophomore receiver Kaedin Robinson for 57 yards on the first play. App State finished the drive on the scoreboard, with the monster catch setting up sophomore kicker Michael Hughes for a 27-yard field goal, giving the Mountaineers an early 3-0 lead. 

The following drive, Old Dominion picked up some momentum moving the ball up the field with ease before freshman defensive lineman Markus Clark stripped the Monarchs’ quarterback, giving the Mountaineers the ball. 

Redshirt sophomore wide receiver Kaedin Robinson catches a 35-yard touchdown pass to score the first touchdown of the opening quarter against Old Dominion Nov. 19, 2022. (Hiatt Ellis)

Both teams suffered three-and-outs on their subsequent possessions, but the Mountaineer offense found success first with Brice hitting senior tight end Henry Pearson for a massive 23-yard gain. Shortly after, Brice struck again, this time finding Robinson for a 35-yard touchdown. The score gave the Mountaineers a 10-0 lead before the first quarter ended. 

After another Monarch punt, Brice continued the air raid, this time in a one-play, 75-yard bomb to sophomore receiver Christian Wells who sprinted to the end zone, extending the Mountaineers’ lead to 17. 

The ensuing drive, App State defense forced another Monarch punt, setting Brice and the offense up with great field position. The Mountaineers used a mix of runs and passes, with Brice finding his favorite target Robinson for another 15-yard gain. The following play, sophomore running back Ahmani Marshall gashed the Monarch defense for a 17-yard touchdown to take a 24-0 lead. 

App States’ defense was tested the next Monarch drive, with Old Dominion driving to the 2-yard line before the Mountaineer defense held strong, shutting out the Monarch offense and forcing a turnover on downs. App State carried its 24-0 lead to halftime. 

The Mountaineers opened the third quarter on offense, coming out with a heavy rushing attack with Marshall picking up multiple 10-plus-yard gains to move the App State offense. The Mountaineers capitalized with Hughes knocking through a 40-yard field goal, giving the Mountaineers a 27-point lead. 

Both offenses slowed down from there with App State forcing multiple punts and another turnover on downs to keep the Monarchs at zero for the third quarter. 

The next score didn’t come until halfway through the fourth quarter, as Old Dominion connected on a 36-yard touchdown, ending the Mountaineers’ shut out. The Monarchs scored again the following drive, striking again with a quick 25-yard touchdown late in the fourth quarter. 

Excited fans cheering from the student section at Kidd Brewer Stadium, Nov. 19, 2022. (Sam Byrd)

The Mountaineers’ offense finished the game from there, as Marshall continued his dominance during the final drive, converting big first downs for the Mountaineers. Marshall iced the game on a massive 23-yard pickup to let the clock expire for the final time in Kidd Brewer this season. 

For his final time in Kidd Brewer, Brice threw for 291 yards and two touchdowns, while completing 68% of his passes. 

“He’s a true Mountaineer,” Clark said. “I can’t say enough good things about Chase, he’s an outstanding football player, but also a better person.” 

The rushing attack was also very present for the Mountaineers, rushing for a total of 291 yards. Marshall led all runners, finishing the game with 139 yards on 19 carries. 

App State now travels to Georgia where it will look to keep its bowl hopes alive as it faces off against rival Georgia Southern. The Eagles are 5-6 on the season, losing to Marshall in their last outing. App State leads the all-time rivalry 20-15-1, winning the previous matchup 27-3. The Mountaineers will also be playing for bowl eligibility. App State has been bowl eligible every year since joining the FBS in 2014. 

“Gotta win it,” Robinson said. “Gotta finish strong, gotta fight.”