Sunday, September 11, 2016
Tuskegee pulls away from Albany State in second half
PHENIX CITY, Alabama -- The 15th-ranked Tuskegee scored 21 unanswered points over a 12-minute span to pull away from Albany State, recording a 28-18 victory at the Whitewater Classic Saturday evening.
After Albany State (0-2, 0-1 SIAC) took advantage of a fumble early in the third quarter to take a 10-7 lead with 9:37 to play, the Golden Tigers took over on both sides of the ball.
The two teams traded positions with Tuskegee (2-0, 2-0 SIAC) turning the ball over on downs, and Albany State missing a field goal. After the missed field goal, the Golden Tigers took over at their own 24-yard line with just 6:24 remaining in the third quarter. The Golden Tigers took seven plays to move the ball 76 yards, scoring on a fumbled snap that was recovered in the end zone by Jerome Lewis with 2:34 to play in the quarter, taking a 14-10 lead.
During the drive, the Golden Tigers used passes of 25 and 27 yards to Javarrius Cheatham and Leo Gilbert to move the ball down the field.
Following a three-and-out forced by the defense, the Golden Tigers took possession again with 1:05 remaining in the third. And it didn't take long for Tuskegee to add to their lead as Kevin Lacey dropped back and found a streaking Leo Gilbert for a 41-yard touchdown pass with 1:05 remaining in the quarter, the second touchdown of the day for the pair. After the extra point, Tuskegee led 21-10.
They added to the lead in the fourth quarter after a pair of Albany State punts, using just two plays to push the lead to 18. Senior Desmond Reece took a pitch and ran around end for a big first down gain, before taking a pass from Lacey and shaking a defender before racing 51 yards for the 28-10 lead with 7:29 to play.
Albany State was able to score late and threatened with just 2:41 remaining but missed a field goal to trim the deficit to seven, allowing Tuskegee to run out the remainder of the clock for the victory.
Tuskegee outgained Albany State 406 to 293 on the night, with freshman Jayjerien Craig leading the way with 130 yards on 23 carries on the night. The freshman averaged 57 yards per carry.
Lacey finished the night 11-for-19 for 250 yards and three touchdowns, while rushing for 49 yards in the win. Reece finished the night with three receptions for 124 yards and a touchdown, while Gilbert and Cheatham each finished with three catches on the night.
Defensively, the Golden Tigers held SIAC Offensive Player of the Year, Jarvis Small, to just 15 yards on nine carries; while Caleb Edmonds finished with 216 yards passing. Linebackers Quavon Taylor and Osband Thompson each finished with 11 tackles on the night, while team sacked Edmonds five times.
Four different players – Terrence Leatherwood (1.5), Darion Hall (1.0), Daryl George (1.5) and Chris Faulkner (1.0) – each got to Edmonds on the night; with three of the sacks coming on three consecutive plays in the fourth quarter. The defense was able to get pressure on Edmonds most of the night with six quarterback hurries.
Tuskegee will renew a rivalry with Florida A&M University next week in the 5th Quarter Classic, the first meeting between the two schools since 1996. The game will kickoff at 6 pm (cst) at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile (Ala.), and will be carried by the Tuskegee Digital Network.
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