Four Downs: Boomtown Boys Strike Oil

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Week 6 of the Non-FBS season saw Lamar secure its first three-game win streak since 2018, UIW take control of the Southland Conference, Texas A&M-Commerce coach Clint Dolezel earn his first win as a collegiate head coach, and Hardin-Simmons survive a scare from McMurry.

First Down: Lamar rides defense to win streak

Peter Rossomando’s first season at Lamar began with three difficult games against FCS No. 8 Idaho, followed by road games against FBS Louisiana-Monroe and South Dakota. Since starting the season an unsurprising 0-3, the Cardinals have won three consecutive games for the first time since 2018.

The Cardinals have secured their most wins in a season since 2019 behind an impressive defense. The ‘Boomtown Boys’ defense has allowed an average of 22.2 points this season and has held their opponents to 32 points during the current win streak.

Second Down: SFA’s path to the playoffs narrowed after loss

Stephen F. Austin’s hopes of securing its second playoff berth in the last three seasons took a massive blow with the Lumberjacks loss at Utah Tech. SFA currently sits at 0-2 in the United Athletic Conference and has a treacherous schedule ahead, beginning with a road trip to meet a solid Central Arkansas team next Saturday.

The ‘Jacks are 3-3 on the season with two losses to FCS competition and need to regroup quickly to salvage any hopes of a playoff berth in a conference that is becoming one of the country's top two or three conferences.

Third Down: Texas A&M-Commerce coach Clint Dolezel earns first collegiate victory

The Texas A&M-Commerce offense found its groove for the first time this year, and the Lions defense forced three turnovers to secure Clint Dolezel’s first win as a collegiate head coach against McNeese. The 41 points scored against the Cowboys nearly equaled their season total (52) entering the contest.

The Lions offense found its groove Saturday after playing the toughest schedule in the FCS through their first four games. The defense proved it remains one of the top in the Southland Conference, which could lead to more wins if the offense continues to improve.

Fourth Down: Hardin-Simmons survives improved McMurry

One result that opened eyes across the country was Hardin-Simmons escaping McMurry with a 19-16 win in overtime. However, considering McMurry's improvement this season, the War Hawks nearly pulling off a win over their crosstown rival shouldn’t be a huge surprise.

Head coach Jordan Neal has a solid team that has scored 105 points in their two victories while nearly defeating a quality Birmingham-Southern team in their opening game and hanging with Mary Hardin-Baylor for a half. McMurry has taken another step forward under Neal and could finish in the middle of the American Southwest Conference.

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