The Wildcats' victory extended their program-record regular-season winning streak to 15 games as they improve to 5-0 overall and 1-0 in the LSC South. ENMU, meanwhile, falls to 2-3 and 0-1. ACU will play its final LSC crossover game next Saturday at winless East Central.
ENMU brought the nation's No. 1 passing offense (593.2 yards per game) and No. 1 total offense (668.8 yards per game) into the contest, but the ACU defense was ready, holding the Greyhounds to just 303 total yards, including minus-1 rushing yard.
Quarterback J.J. Harp was picked off three times and was held to only 304 yards through the air, just a little more than half his per-game total entering the contest. ACU's defense harassed Harp and his receivers all night, finishing with four sacks, seven tackles for loss and 14 pass breakups.
Senior safety Tony Harp led a slew of outstanding efforts on the defensive side of the ball with seven tackles, one interception and two pass breakups. Kevin Washington was a force all night, finishing with three tackles, one sack, two tackles for loss, one force fumble and four quarterback hurries.
The Greyhouds, though, held a 13-9 halftime lead and extended it to 20-9 early in the third quarter when Mark Patterson returned an interception 61 yards for a score. On the ensuing kickoff, Justin Johnson returned the kick 100 yards for a score, joining Steve Parker and John Hooper as the only Wildcats to return a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown.
The Greyhounds responded, though, marching 66 yards on five plays and using just 53 seconds to score on a Harp-to-JT Thompson 10-yard touchdown pass. The extra point gave the Greyhounds a 27-16 lead with 7:05 left in the third quarter.
After ACU scored on a 38-yard pass from Zach Stewart to Edmund Gates to make it 27-23 with 5:10 to play, the Greyhounds pushed the lead back to 30-23 with 38 seconds left in the quarter on a Taylor Cannon 39-yard field goal.
But the Wildcats turned the game over to the running backs in the fourth quarter, running the ball 17 times for 145 yards while only attempting two passes. Brown had 87 yards and three scores in the fourth, while Richardson had 57 yards in the final 15 minutes.
Brown scored on a 6-yard run with 14:55 left in the game to knot it at 30-30, but the Greyhounds answered with a 62-yard drive that ended with a 35-yard field goal from Cannon to make it a 33-30 game with 12:27 to play.
But Brown scored twice in a 24-second span of the fourth quarter to give the Wildcats a 44-30 lead. After a 15-yard touchdown run made it 37-33 with 5:58 to play, Major Culbert picked off a Harp pass and returned it to the ENMU 22-yard line. Brown did the rest, scoring from 22 yards out on the drive's first play to make it 44-30 with 5:34 left in the game.
The Greyhounds drove to ACU's 25 in the game's final minutes, but
turned it over on downs with 3:25 to play after Craig Harris broke up a
fourth-down pass intended for JT Thompson. The Wildcats -- behind a
52-yard run by Richardson to the ENMU 3-yard line were able to run the
clock out to secure their fourth straight win over the Greyhounds.