Tigers Beat Albany State 35-19
D’Angelo Durham rushed for a career-high 150 yards and scored three touchdowns to lead Savannah State to a 35-19 Homecoming win over Albany State, before a crowd of 8,101 at TA Wright Stadium on October 26. It was the largest crowd at Wright Stadium since 2016 when 8,119 showed up to see SSU play Howard.
It was the Tigers first win over Albany State since 1991 and it halted a 15-game losing skid to the Rams.
Durham scored on a one yard run with 10:52 left in the first quarter for the early lead but the Rams bounced back with a touchdown and two field goals to go ahead 13-7 with 3:33 left in the second quarter.
With 14 seconds left before halftime, Durham scored on a 18 yard scamper that gave SSU a 14-13 advantage. The Tigers would not trail again. In the third quarter, Durham scored on a 62 yard run and Einaj Carter took a forward pass from JT Hartage and raced 18 yards for a score to expand the Tigers lead to 28-13.
The Rams scored their final touchdown midway in the fourth quarter to pull within 28-19 but the Tigers sealed the victory with 2:46 remaining when linebacker Desmond Young scooped up a fumble and rambled 45 yards for a touchdown to make it 35-19. Hartage ran for 53 yards for SSU and completed four of five pass attempts for 34 yards. Carter caught three passes for 21 yards. Walter Yates anchored the defense with 11 tackles.
Albany State (5-3, 3-1) was led by Savannah native McKinley Habersham who ran for 92 yards and a touchdown. Former Beach High standout Ralph Lovett saw time at wide receiver for the Rams but did not catch a pass.
The victory gives Savannah State a 5-3 overall mark and a 4-0 conference record. It also guarantees the Tigers their first non-losing season since 1998.
Savannah State Prepares For FVSU
Savannah State will host Fort Valley State at TA Wright Stadium on November 2.
It will be the first game between the Tigers and Wildcats since 2014, a 42-28 Fort Valley State victory.
The last time SSU defeated the Wildcats was six years ago (2013), a 27- 20 win.
It’s no secret that Fort Valley State has dominated SSU over the years, leading the overall series 35-12-4. The only SSU coach that had some success against the Wildcats was Bill Davis who won five of nine games against FVSU. Under Davis, the Tigers had a stretch of four consecutive years of wins (1987, ‘88, ‘89 and ‘90).
Both enter the contest undefeated in conference play with 4-0 records.
SSU’s offense is led by sophomore running back D’Angelo Durham who needs 274 yards to become the first Savannah State player to rush for 1,000 yards in a single season since Troy Hambrick ran for 1,261 yards in 1999. Sophomore linebacker Walter Yates anchors the defense with 51 tackles.
FVSU (6-2) is riding a six game winning streak and has the top offense in the SIAC, averaging 37.2 points a game. Quarterback Slade Jarman, who has already thrown for 2,099 yards and 18 touchdowns, was injured in last week’s Clark Atlanta contest so the Wildcats will turn to backup senior signal caller Demontay Jones to leads them into the SSU game. The famed “Blue Death Defense” is holding opponents to just 140 rushing yards per game and leads the conference with 32 sacks.
Locals on the Wildcat roster include linebacker DJ Cone (Islands High School) and defensive back Montraveon Futch (Jenkins High School). Savannah State transfers Zaine Burton (defensive line) and Tahmaj Faust (offensive lineman) are also on the FVSU roster.
SSU Booster Bus Trip To
The Savannah State Community Booster Club is sponsoring a bus trip to watch the Tigers play Edward Waters in Jacksonville, Florida on November 9. The cost of the trip is $60 which includes a game ticket.
The bus will begin loading at 10:30 a.m. from the Student Union parking lot and will leave at 11 a.m. For more information, contact Barbara McGhee at 912-441-1868.
Habersham Wins Player of the Week
Albany State senior running back McKinley Habersham was named the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Offensive Player of the Week for his performance in the Rams win over Benedict on October 19. The Savannah native led the Golden Rams to a low scoring 7-2 victory over Benedict as they extended their win streak to five games. Habersham finished the contest with 158 yards on 27 carries and scored the game’s lone touchdown.