B-CU Claims MEAC Title with 49-7 Win at Savannah State
SAVANNAH, Ga. - Quentin Williams rushed for a game-high 113 yards and passed for a career-high 103 yards and two touchdowns, pushing Bethune-Cookman to a decisive 49-7 victory over Savannah State on Saturday night inside Ted A. Wright Stadium. The victory for the Wildcats - and a loss earlier by North Carolina Central, allowed them to claim sole possession of the MEAC title, its second championship in three years under head coach Brian Jenkins.
For Bethune-Cookman, the sole possession of the conference championship is its first outright MEAC title since 2002.
B-CU (8-2 overall, 7-0 MEAC) began the game slowly, operating through two offensive possessions until finally scoring its first offensive touchdown. However, the attacking Wildcats defense was ready to touch the scoreboard, using two blocked punts in the opening half - one going for a 4-yard touchdown by Torre Price in the opening quarter.
The B-CU offense and running back Rodney Scott took advantage of the second blocked punt, as he raced in from 10 yards out in the second quarter to give his team a 14-0 advantage following a Sven Hurd kick.
Savannah State (1-9, 0-7 MEAC) was unable to stop the B-CU offense once it got rolling, as the Cats struck the scoreboard on five of their next six drives.
With time running out in the first half, Williams eluded the Tigers defense and found David Blackwell in the back of the end zone for a 36-yard touchdown strike as time expired, allowing the Cats a 35-0 advantage at the break.
SSU got on the board in the third quarter following a punt that was touched by the B-CU return man, and Cornel Weston recovered it in the end zone to cut the Wildcats lead at 35-7.
Senior quarterback Brodrick Waters entered the game in the third quarter and immediately went to work, establishing a nine-play, 45-yard drive that took 3:47 off the clock and ended with him crossing the goal line from three yards out, stretching the B-CU lead at 42-7.
Waters added another touchdown in the fourth quarter as he ran in from eight yards away after an 11-play drive that chewed up 5:34 off the clock.
As a team, Bethune-Cookman rushed for a season-high 377 yards, while the 49 points surpassed the previous high of 48 versus Norfolk State (Oct. 20). The offense also struck for 537 yards of total offense on 73 plays.
Defensively, the Wildcats posted six tackles for loss, including 2.5 (1.5 sacks) from LeBrandon Richardson, and six assisted tackles from Harold Love III. Jarkevis Fields and Richardson claimed five stops apiece, as well as Jocelyn Borgella. Interceptions were collected by a trio of players - D.J. Howard, Marquis Drayton and Tyrone Bouie, Jr. It was the third time in the last four games B-CU has posted multiple interceptions in a game.
The interception in the second quarter by D.J. Howard allowed Bethune-Cookman to extend its current FCS-leading streak of games with an interception to 17.
Savannah State was led defensively by Vaughn Cornelia with 14 tackles - nine solo stops and a forced fumble, as well as teammate Terrance Williams with 13 tackles (10 assisted). The offense for the Tigers was paced by quarterback Antonio Bostic with 120 yards passing on 11-of-30 passing, and Lereginald Veals picking up 51 yards on the ground through nine carries.
Bethune-Cookman will look to secure the school's first 8-0 MEAC record when they play in-state rival Florida A&M in the Florida Blue Florida Classic next Saturday in Orlando. The game is scheduled for a 2 p.m. kickoff at the Citrus Bowl, and will be televised live by ESPN Classic.
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