Monday, October 24, 2016

Bethune-Cookman earns first win of season; Terry Sims’ 10 win

NORFOLK, Virginia -- Akevious Williams and Cameron Rigby ran for touchdowns on consecutive drives in the second quarter and Bethune-Cookman held on to defeat Norfolk State by a count of 21-14 on Saturday for its first victory of the 2016 season. Additionally, the win was the 10th of second-year head coach Terry Sims' career at the helm in Daytona Beach.

"I'm, first and foremost, proud of these guys for sticking in there and fighting for this win," said Sims afterwards. "We've had a rough year; a lot of adversity. But they didn't let it get to them. We have constantly been preparing, and today they put an entire game together, and I couldn't be more proud of the team and my coaching staff."

Williams scored on a 5-yard run early in the second quarter and Rigby's 11-yard run capped a 10-play, 59-yard drive for the Wildcats (1-5, 1-3 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference). The win was the third consecutive for Bethune-Cookman over Norfolk State, and the third consecutive of its kind in Virginia.

Redshirt junior quarterback Larry Brihm, Jr. and classmate wide receiver Jawill Davis hooked up on a 39-yard touchdown for the Wildcats in the first quarter, but the Spartans (1-6, 0-4 MEAC) quickly responded as quarterback Greg Hankerson scampered 43 yards to tie it at 7-7.

Norfolk State scored on Quintreil Chung's 4-yard run early in the fourth quarter, capping an 81-yard drive. That was set up when Sandy Chapman intercepted Williams on a trick play after B-CU reached the red zone.

The Spartans next drive ended on downs near midfield, but a Jonathan Cagle interception – as the redshirt senior punter tried to throw the ball away following a bobbled snap from center – allowed the Spartans to get the ball.

Norfolk State reached the Wildcats' 22 yard line, but then lost the ball on downs again.

Brihm lead the Wildcats offense with 138 yards and a touchdown through the air, connecting on 9-of-19 passing. Davis, tight end Ja-Quan Lumas and receiver Keavon Mitchell were each targeted for two receptions from Brihm and Williams, respectfully.

For the first time all season, Bethune-Cookman used a heavy two-quarterback system with Brihm and Williams.

"I can't say enough about both of the quarterbacks today," added Sims. "Larry [Brihm] is still not 100 percent, but he went out and we started him today. He played a great football game. He managed the game. More importantly, he allowed our offensive guys, our skill guys to make plays for him.

"When we needed a change of pace, we put Akevious [Williams] into the game. He did the same thing as far as managing the game. Those guys prepared all week together, and both were ready whenever their number was called."

Safety turned outside linebacker Alexander Morales collected a career-high seven tackles (five assisted), adding a tackle behind the line, to lead the Maroon and Gold defense. Safeties Diquan Richardson and Arthur Williams each tallied six.

Bethune-Cookman returns home next weekend when the Wildcats welcome Delaware State to Municipal Stadium on a B-CU Homecoming weekend in Daytona Beach, Florida. The game begins at 4 p.m., on Saturday, Oct. 29.

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