Tigers Beat Fort Valley State 53-24
Savannah State quarterback D’Vonn Gibbons accounted for six touchdowns to lead the Tigers to a 53-24 win over Fort Valley State in a game played at T.A.Wright Stadium before a crowd of 5,833 spectators on November 2.
Gibbons passed for four touchdowns and ran for two more as he combined for 220 yards of offense with 75 passing yards and a career high 145 rushing yards. D’Angelo Durham ran for a game-high 148 yards while scoring two touchdowns.
Gibbons scored on a 14 yard run to give the Tigers a 7-0 lead in the first quarter before throwing touchdown passes to Major Bellamy (30 yards) and Einaj Carter (29 yards). Durham scored on a 67 yard run with just over two minutes left in the opening quarter to give SSU a 27-0 lead.
Durham scored on a 13 yard run midway in the second quarter and Gibbons tossed a four yard scoring pass to tight end Jontae Baker with 1:40 showing to open up a 40-0 lead.
The Wildcats got on the scoreboard with 25 seconds left before intermission with a 37 yard field goal.
FVSU scored a touchdown early in the third quarter to pull within 40-10 but the Tigers responded with Gibbons running for a 76 yard touchdown and then throwing a 14 yard scoring pass to Adunte Devereux to expand their advantage to 53-10.
The Wildcats (6- 3, 4-1 SIAC) scored a pair of touchdowns in the final quarter to make the score look somewhat respectable.
The Savannah State defense, which held FVSU to just three yards rushing, was led by Desmond Young’s eight tackles. Walter Yates and Ny’em Bozeman both had interceptions.
Antonio Golden from Liberty County had seven tackles for FVSU and DJ Cone from Port Wentworth contributed two solo tackles.
The victory secures a winning season for Savannah State, their first since posting a 7-4 record in 1998 under Daryl McNeill. The Tigers finished their conference slate with a 5-0 mark while improving to 6-3 overall.
SSU To Start Basketball Season
Savannah State will tip off their 2019-20 basketball season on November 8 with a exhibition game against Fort Stewart in Tiger Arena.
The SSU Lady Tigers will play at 5:30 p.m. and the SSU men will tip of around 7:30 p.m.
The Savannah State women will open the regular season with a five game home-stand against Carver (Nov 10), Morris (Nov 15), Allen (Nov 27), Kentucky State (Nov 30) and Central State (Dec 2) while the SSU men will also begin their first year back in Division II with five home games against College of Coastal Georgia (Nov 14), Carver (Nov 23), Kentucky State (Nov 30), Central State (Dec 2) and Claflin (Dec 6).
Durham Nearing 1,000 Yards
Savannah State sophomore running back is inching closer to rushing for 1,000 yards this season. The Augusta, Georgia native is 126 yards shy of the mark and will get his last chance to achieve the mark on November 9 when the Tigers close out their regular season on the road against Edward Waters in Jacksonville, Florida.
Last season, D’Angelo Durham played in nine games and carried the ball 14 times for 41 yards and no touchdowns.
A year later, he has produced three 100+ yard games with 125 against Virginia Lynchburg, 150 against Albany State and 148 against Fort Valley State. He also ran for 85 yards against Benedict, 94 yards against Alcorn State and 99 against Clark Atlanta. Durham was held to 63 yards in the season opener against Florida Tech and managed 51 and 59 yards against Morehouse and Charleston Southern respectively.
Only four other Savannah State running backs have reach 1,000 yards in a single season.
Casey Grigley was the first in 1986 with 1,163 yards. Lucius Cole did it twice in 1991 (1,092) and ‘92 (1,299) as did Chris Cachere who ran for 1,196 yards in 1994 and 1,221 yards in ‘95. The last SSU player to gain 1,000 yards in a single season was Troy Hambrick. The former NFL player who logged time with the Dallas Cowboys and Arizona Cardinals ran for 1,261 yards in 1999.
EWC Invited To Join SIAC
Through its Council of President’s, the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference voted unanimously to extend an invitation to Edward Waters College (EWC) to join its conference membership.
Currently, EWC holds membership as a member institution of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and the GCAC (Gulf Coast Athletic Conference) while competing as an independent in football. The NCAA Division II SIAC’s invitation portends a possible historic homecoming of sorts for Edward Waters as EWC was formerly a conference member over eight decades ago from 1930 to 1935.