Buffs keep Wagon Wheel

CANYON, Texas — Sophomore quarterback Dustin Vaughan threw for four touchdowns — three covering at least 68 yards — and No. 24 West Texas A&M rolled up 659 total yards in cruising to a 52-21 Lone Star Conference football victory over Eastern New Mexico University on Saturday in the annual “Wagon Wheel” game.

Vaughan needed only 14 completions to amass 402 yards through the air as the Buffs (5-2, 5-1 LSC) bounced back from a loss at Abilene Christian last week and beat the Greyhounds (2-6, 1-4) for the sixth consecutive time.

It was the third of four consecutive games for ENMU against ranked opponents. The Hounds will host No. 12 Midwestern State next Saturday at Blackwater Draw before closing the season at Texas A&M-Commerce and at home against Texas A&M-Kingsville.

WT led 28-0 at halftime, scoring on four of its first five possessions. The one stop by ENMU came when the Hounds threw running back Aarrhon Flores for no gain on fourth-and-goal at the 1 early in the second quarter.

Flores rushed for 130 yards on just 12 carries, leading a Buffs ground game which piled up 267 yards and averaged nearly nine yards an attempt.

Vaughan had scoring passes of 26 yards to Lance Ratliff, 94 yards to Brittan Golden and 68 yards to Jeremy Watson in the first half, while running back Khiry Robinson added a 2-yard touchdown run.

The Hounds started from their own 45 following the second-half kickoff and a personal-foul penalty on WT. They scored in six plays, capped by junior quarterback Wes Wood’s 13-yard TD toss to senior wide receiver Darian Dale.

But Vaughan threw a 71-yard scoring pass to Lance Ratliff on WT’s next series, then came out of the game later in the quarter.

The Buffs led 49-7 before the Hounds put together two late scoring drives. They went 60 yards in five plays, with Wood hitting Seth Bailey on an 11-yard TD strike with 10:24 left.

Dwight Morrison’s 49-yard interception return set up a 25-yard field goal by WT’s Sergio Castillo Jr. with 4:24 left. Backup QB Sawyer Cornelius then drove the Hounds 73 yards in 10 plays and hit Bailey on a 7-yard scoring pass with three seconds left.