Sports With Walter Moore

FAMU 20 SSU 14

The Florida A&M defense made a goal line stand with four seconds left to give the Rattlers a 20-14 victory over Savannah State, in a game played at Ted Wright Stadium, on September 23. After opening the season with a pair of road games, it was the home opener for the Tigers.

FAMU led 14-7 at intermission but Savannah Stated freshman quarterback D’Vonn Gibbons scored on a 40 yard run with just under 12 minutes left in the fourth quarter to tie the game at 14, to cap a 99 yard drive.

The Rattlers scored a touchdown with 6:11 left in the contest but the extra point was missed which gave Tiger faithful hopes of getting a much needed win.

Savannah State drove from their own 29 to the FAMU one yard line, fumbled the ball but recovered it at the Rattlers four. Gibbons threw back to back passes to senior wide receiver Derek Kirkland but he could not haul them in and the Tigers turned the ball over on downs.

Gibbons scored on a five yard run with 6:10 left in the first quarter to give SSU the early lead but the Rattlers (2-2) struck back with Ryan Stanley throwing touchdown passes to Chad Hunter of 38 and 15 yards in the first and second quarter to take the lead.

The crowd of 4,670 saw Gibbons lead the Tigers by running for 123 yards and passing for 62. Uriah Oliver ran for 87 yards while Tino Smith caught four passes for 38 yards. Juwuan Tolbert had eight tackles for the defense. The Tigers (0-3) had their best offensive showing of the young season, gaining 304 yards. But the defense gave up 335 yards.

SSU played the game without sophomore quarterback TJ Bell, who was seen on the sidelines with crutches. Bell is expected to miss 6-8 weeks with a leg injury.

Howard 26 Bethune- Cookman 24

Caylin Newton’s five yard touchdown run with 39 seconds left proved to be the game-winner as Howard defeated

Bethune-Cookman in a game played September 23 at Greene Stadium. Newton, who is the son of Savannah State graduates Cecil and Jackie Newton, ended the game accounting for three touchdowns.

Newton completed 12 of 25 passes for 157 yards and an interception, and ran for 154 yards on 22 carries, including a one-yard score that put Howard (2-2) ahead 20-14 early in the third. He connected with Anthony Philyaw on a five-yard touchdown pass to send the teams tied at 14 as they went into the half.

Que’shaun Byrd’s 24-yard scoring run gave Bethune-Cookman a 21-20 edge before Ureil Hernandez booteed a 42-yard field goal for a 24-20 lead, late in the third quarter.

The crowd of 2,217 saw Michael Jones gain 122 yards on 21 carries for the Wildcats (1-3). Larry Brihm scored on a 20-yard run and was 16 of 28 for 185 yards passing with a 23-yard touchdown pass to Frank Brown.

SSU/ Bethune- Cookman Bus Trip

The Savannah State University Booster Club is sponsoring a football game trip to Daytona Beach, Fla., to watch the SSU Tigers take on Bethune-Cookman on September 30. The cost is $75 and includes game ticket and bus transportation. Boarding will begin at 8:30a.m. and the bus will leave at 9 a.m.Contact: Barbara McGhee at 912- 352-7800 or 912-441-1868 or


While Savannah State is winless with a 0-3 record, the Tigers former coach, Earnest Wilson, is off to a good start after his Elizabeth City Vikings team came from behind to defeat Johnson C Smith 20-17 in a game played at Roebuck Stadium, on September 23. The win gives Elizabeth City State a 3-1 record. After four contests, the Vikings are averaging 365.8 yards and 28.3 points a game. The Vikings have defeated Central State, Fayetteville State and Johnson C. Smith while their only setback came from UNC Pembroke. Savannah native Miacah Cooper anchors the ECSU defense with 33 tackles from his linebacker spot. Cooper,a junior, played at Memorial Day.

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