The Troy Trojans (5-7, 3-5) closed out the 2019 season with a disappointing 48-13 conference loss to the No. 22-ranked Appalachian State Mountaineers (11-1, 7-1) on Friday, Nov. 29.
The Trojans needed a win over the Mountaineers to earn bowl eligibility and as a result of the loss will miss out on postseason play for the first time since 2015. The win total is also the first time that Troy has won less than 10 games since 2015.
After Troy jumped out to a 3-0 lead early in the first quarter, Appalachian State scored 20 unanswered points to take command of the game.
Troy cut the lead to 20-10 on a 1-yard touchdown run from DK Billingsley with 1:13 left in the first quarter, but Appalachian State closed out the first half with a 34-13 lead and never looked back.
“We had a few good opportunities on offense, but we just couldn’t get in the end zone,” Troy coach Chip Lindsey said following the loss. “Overall, we just didn’t get it done.
“We’re disappointed in how our season went. We’ve had a lot of adversity but hopefully this will help us get ready as we prepare for the 2020 season, and our guys will use this as motivation heading into next year.”
Troy quarterback Kaleb Barker ended his Trojan career completing 24-of-41 passes for 281 yards and an interception, while junior quarterback Kade Young saw his first game action completing 3-of-5 passes for 23 yards and an interception.
The Trojans totaled just 35 rushing yards as a team, while Reggie Todd caught five passes for 82 yards. Troy was forced to play without starting center Dylan Bradshaw and cornerback Will Sunderland in the game, who both missed their first game of the season due to injury.
Appalachian State rolled up 522 yards of offense, which is the sixth time the Trojan defense has given up 470 yards or more and the fifth time they’ve given up 500 yards or more. Appalachian State’s 48 points is also the sixth time the Troy defense has given up at least 40 points this season.
Sophomore All American Carlton Martial once again led the Trojan defense with 13 tackles and two tackles-for-loss.
Barker ended his senior season with 3,628 passing yards, which is the third most in a season in Troy history. Barker’s 30 passing touchdowns is also the third most in school history.
Billingsley ended the season with 901 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns as the sophomore was forced to carry more of the load after senior running back BJ Smith suffered a season-ending knee injury in the first game of the season.
Kaylon Geiger led the Trojan receivers with 77 catches for 873 yards and five touchdowns, while Khalil McClain hauled in 45 passes for 562 yards and seven touchdowns. Reggie Todd added 38 catches for 666 yards and five touchdowns, while Luke Whittemore caught 34 passes for 431 yards and two touchdowns.
Todd, McClain and Geiger are juniors and Whittemore is a redshirt sophomore with all four expected to return in 2019.
The Trojan defense was led in 2019 by sophomore Martial with 126 total tackles and 18.5 tackles-for-loss along with four sacks and three interceptions.