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RECORD-SETTING PERFORMANCES HELP FOOTBALL TO 42-21 WIN

RECORD-SETTING PERFORMANCES HELP FOOTBALL TO 42-21 WIN

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — DeAndre Carter and Garrett Safron solidified themselves as two of the best in Sacramento State history in a 42-21 Hornet victory on Saturday against Southern Utah.

The victory moved Sacramento State to 5-5 on the year and 2-4 in the Big Sky. The Thunderbirds fell to 2-8 overall and 2-4 in league games.

Carter set the school single-game record with 16 receptions for 273 yards and caught four touchdown passes. In the process, he also set the single-season touchdown record as he improved his total of 15 on the year. The senior also jumped into second place on the single-season reception list with 82 catches.

Safron, who owns nearly every career passing record in Hornet history, completed 25-of-33 passes for 425 yards and five touchdowns. The senior's yardage total was the third highest by a Hornet and gives him the top four totals in the Sacramento State record book. Safron tied his own single-season record with 27 touchdowns this year and is now second with 2,912 passing yards in 2014.

After punting on its first drive, the Hornets scored the game's first points when Safron and Carter hooked up for a 19-yard touchdown pass. That score was immediately matched by the first of three receiving TDs for SUU's Chris Robinson to tie the score at the end of the first quarter.

Carter, who had five grabs for 84 yards in the first 15 minutes of the game, caught his second TD pass on the opening play of the second quarter. The San Jose, Calif., native caught the pass about 3-yards shy of the goal line but was able to graze the pylon with a dive in the front right corner of the end zone. That drive was kept alive by a 34-yard pass to Carter on 4th-and-1 from the Thunderbird 36-yard line

The Hornet defense forced two more punts before Sacramento State stretched its lead to 21-7 on an 18-yard connection between Safron and Carter. The team posted one more score in the first half when Safron found tight end Chris Broadnax for a diving 22-yard catch in the back of the end zone.

The third quarter proved to be much the same, as the Hornets began the half with a stop on 4th-and-goal and responded with an 8-play, 96-yard drive which ended with a 1-yard TD run from De'Jon Coleman. The score stretched to 42-7 early in the fourth quarter with a 40-yard over-the-shoulder completion to Carter which broke the single-game receiving yardage record. That mark of 228 was set by Alex Estrada against Southern Utah on Nov. 11, 1995.

The T-Birds closed the contest with two scoring drives The first series ended with a 9-yard pass to Robinson from Ammon Olsen. After a fumble recovery near midfield, backup quarterback Aaron Cantu completed 5-of-7 pass attempts for 59 yards, including another 9-yard score to Robinson.

Sacramento State recorded its fifth game this season with at least 500 yards of total offense as it compiled 563 on 74 plays. The team rushed for 138 led by 58 from Coleman and 57 from Jordan Robinson. Along with Carter's historic efforts, Broadnax caught four passes for 56 yards and Nnamdi Agude and Justin Cox each had two grabs.

Defensively, the Hornets limited a SUU offense which entered the game ranked sixth in the FBS to 404 total yards and 338 in the air. Sacramento State was stingy against the run as SUU averaged 2.9 yards on 23 carries. The 66 rushing yards allowed were the fewest against the Hornets this season. Linebackers Russell Smith and Henry Fernandez and safety Dexter Alcala each had double-digit tackles. Smith led all players with 16 stops. Fernandez and Alcala had 12. The team also combined for four sacks, led by two from senior Jaycee Totty.

Sacramento State will close out its home season on Saturday, Nov. 15, against Portland State at 2 p.m. Prior to the start the team will honor its seniors who will be playing their final home game.

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