Inside Hotlanta and the SIAC
By Hal Lamar
Photos by Patsy Collier-Lamar
Whoa!! Tuskegee Knocked From Unbeatens By Kentucky State
The shock that shook the world of the SIAC and the world of HBCU football occurred on undefeated Tuskegee’s homecoming last Saturday. The Golden Tigers got themselves upset 10-9 by Kentucky State which has seen their fortunes balloon from an 0-3 start to winning their third straight and four of their last five games. The upset was watched by a homecoming crowd of well over 25,000 at Tuskegee’s Cleve Abbott Stadium. An eyewitness observer says the low scoring didn’t speak to the tension of the contest or the seeming preparedness of the KSU Thorobreds. “You had to be there to see it,” the observer told INSIDE. “ KSU came out the locker room ready for bear.” KSU led most of the ballgame and kept the Golden Tigers out of the end zone save a 26 yard field goal late in the first quarter by sophomore placekicker Dalton Hall giving the Tigers a 3-0 lead, their only one of the game. Then midway through the second period and thanks to a Tuskegee turnover, KSU needed only three plays to score from the Tuskegee 9 to take the lead. Then at 7:26 of the third period, Tuskegee’s franchise quarterback Kevin Lacey fumbled at midfield. The oval was recovered by KSU’s junior defensive lineman Rodriguez Jones at the Thororbred 48. That led to a 29 yard field goal by redshirt senior placekicker Bill Rose and a 10-3 KSU lead.
With 6:46 remaining in the contest, Lacey engineered a 71 yard drive with a series of pass completions and rushes that got the ball to the KSU 12. Three plays later, senior running back Jerome Lewis took it over from the one yard line. But the crucial PAT which would have tied the score was blocked by KSU junior defensive lineman Donovan Cecil .
The scoring drive consumed 5:21 of clock and following the kickoff the ‘Breds took over on their own five yard line. At 1:25, KSU’s offense was stymied by the rugged Golden Tiger defense and couldn’t get the oval past their own six yard line. A poor punt by the ‘Breds put the Golden Tigers in the cat bird’s seat at the KSU 8. But then it was the KSU’s defense’s turn to stiffen and forced ‘Skegee to attempt a field goal from the KSU 3. The 18 yard attempt by Hall was blocked by almost the entire KSU defense. The ball was placed at the KSU 3 yard line. But there was only two seconds left on the clock. You can probably deduce the rest.
KSU’s first place showing in the conference west division this far along in the season is laudatory for the Frankfort Kentucky based college. If they continue their current winning trend, it will be their best won-loss record since 2011 when they went 6-4.
KSU has one more division game this weekend against Lane in Frankfort. Tuskegee, with one division loss that dropped them from first to third in the SIAC west, is under some pressure to win both their final games against Central State and Miles, both of whom are in the west…………
IN THE REST OF THE CONFERENCE: Speaking of Miles, the second place team in the west defeated rival Lane 26-14 on the road……..
Central State, down 20-0 at halftime of last week’s game with Fort Valley, scored 21 points in the third to narrow the Wildcat lead to one, The Marauders extended their lead to 28-20 early in the fourth but then gave up a field goal and a long, clock-eating drive by FVSU which led to the winning touchdown with no time remaining on the clock and handed the Wildcats a 30-28 homecoming victory……….
IN HOTLANTA: The Cardinal and Black Panthers, second in the eastern division of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC), missed an opportunity to grab sole possession of first place in the east by losing to Albany State University, 17-7, in Albany as homecoming guests of the Rams. Although the Panthers are leading ASU in the overall won-loss stats (5-3 vs. 4-3), the ASU win lifted the Rams to first place (2-0) in the division.
CAU went into the locker room Saturday afternoon leading Albany State 7-3 thanks to a 77 yard drive that ended with a 10 yard rush to the end zone by quarterback Dashawn Blow. The redshirt sophomore had spelled starting signal QB Johnathan McCrary earlier in the quarter.
CAU’s lead was short-lived, however. The Golden Ram offense, which played lethargically in the first half, suddenly found their second wind in the second half when starting quarterback Caleb Edmonds ended a 10 play, 91 yard drive with a 27 yard pass in the end zone to sophomore McKinley Habersham .
ASU, now leading 10-7,extended their lead midway the fourth period when Edmonds, a senior, turned a seven play, 54 yard drive to six points with a two yard rush.
With only 4:29 remaining in the game, time became the enemy of CAU . With 3:43 remaining and a promising drive stalled at the Rams 25, CAU’s celebrated kicker Carlos Saidana attempted a 42 yard field goal. It sailed wide left. CAU’s 49 yard drive ate up 3:43 of clock. The Rams then sat on the oval the remaining 42 seconds and picked up their second division victory, their third conference win and improved their overall to 4-3. Edmonds passed for 232 yards which included a touchdown strike. Blow, who played the majority of the game at QB for the Panthers, passed for 120 yards and rushed for their only score but he was also sacked four times. Despite his limited playing time, McCrary wound up passing for 115 yards but was sacked twice.
The Morehouse-Benedict contest was closer but the outcome was the same as CAU’s. Morehouse trailed Benedict 13-3 until the 4:30 mark of the fourth period when starting senior quarterback Mongavious Johnson ended a 13 play, 72 yard drive with a 29 yard pass to true freshman Tramel Gooden.
A little better than a minute later and with 3:11 remaining in the fourth quarter, Morehouse got their hands on the oval again .Starting from their own 47, Johnson led the Maroon Tiger offense to the Benedict 16. The drive stalled at the Tiger 10 and forced Morehouse to settle for a field goal to tie. That brought on field goal kicker junior Alexis Gonzalez for a 21 yard attempt.. It was blocked by Benedict junior Rickey Holmes and recovered by junior Edward Kirkland . Benedict’s offense then sat on the football the remaining 38 seconds of the contest . The win by Benedict put the brakes on a three game losing skid and slid the Maroon Tigers to their sixth straight loss
- THIS WEEK’S GAMES AND INSIDE PICKS
Tuskegee@ Central State-Tuskegee by 6
Lane@ Kentucky State-KSU by 7
Benedict vs. Albany State(Augusta Georgia)- Benedict by 3
Miles@ CAU- Miles by 3
Fort Valley@ Morehouse-Morehouse by 7 (Morehouse homecoming)
Got an item? Contact Hal -> hallamar at comcast.net