Aggies beat Wake Forest, Keeton leaves game early

LOGAN – The Aggies picked up the win against Wake Forest Saturday night, beating the Demon Deacons 36-24, but the victory came with a price. When the second half started, Darrel Garretson, not Chuckie Keeton came into the game at quarterback. A short time later, Keeton came out of the locker room, out of uniform and on crutches.

Coach Wells said after the game that he didn’t know much about Keeton’s situation, but that it was an injury to the same knee that took him off the field last season. He said that for precautionary reasons the doctors said he was “done for the night.”

“We’ll know a little more tomorrow,” he said.

The Aggies didn’t start off the game the way they wanted to. On the offense’s first drive Keeton threw an interception that was returned 70 yards for a touchdown. The next time the Aggie defense took the field USU linebacker Zach Vigil returned the favor with a touchdown interception of his own. That would be the start of 29 unanswered points by the Aggies.

“That kind of set the tone for the defense of how we were going to have to play tonight to come away with a victory,” Vigil said.

The defense added seven more points in the second quarter when Devin Centers returned a fumble for a touchdown. The defensive touchdowns set two Utah State records. It was the first time an Aggie defense has scored twice in one game and the first time an Aggie defense has scored in consecutive games.

Backup quarterback Garretson started the second half with an interception that led to a touchdown, but was able to turn it around finishing 11 for 16 passing for 121 yards.

“That kid has got a lot of moxie,” Wells said. “Our players will rally around him if he is the guy going forward.”

Coach Wells had a lot of praise for Hunter Sharp and Ronald Butler as well. Sharp finished the game with 12 receptions and 138 yards.

“Seven days ago I said those guys are going to have to step up and play quality reps,” Wells said. “Not just reps but quality reps and I’m proud of Hunter and I’m proud of Butler.”

Wake Forest was unable to move the ball on the ground. The Demon Deacons had -25 rushing yards. B.J. Larsen led the Aggies with three sacks. All of them were drive-ending and came at crucial times during the second half.

“When you are feeling it, which I was, it is kind of contagious,” Larsen said. “Once you get your first sack they kind of just start coming.”

The win gives the Aggies a 2-1 record for the year. The team will travel to Jonesboro, Arkansas on September 20 to take on Arkansas State.

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