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Saturday, October 20, 2012


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RICHMOND, Va. – Virginia Union University used a 16 point second quarter to gain all the momentum needed and rolled to a 37-13 victory over Bowie State University. The win improves Virginia Union’s record to 4-4 overall (2-3 CIAA) but drops Bowie State’s record to 4-4 overall (2-3 CIAA).

Redshirt quarterback Jared Johnston led the Bowie State offense with 98 passing yards, completing 9-of-19 passes (one interception) before being pulled in the third quarter. Redshirt sophomore Keith Brown was Bowie State’s top rusher with 68 yards on 18 carries and junior Corwin Acker added 60 rushing yards on 12 carries. Redshirt junior Delante White paced the Bulldogs defense with eight tackles in the loss. Another bright spot for Bowie State was the play of junior Anthony Gary who recorded two interceptions, two pass breakups and collected five tackles.

The Bowie State defense surrendered 250 total yards in the first half, but only allowed Virginia Union 71 total yards in the second half.

“We had the ball in red zone several times off defensive turnovers but were unable to take advantage of the opportunities”, said Bowie State head coach Damon Wilson.

Virginia Union was led offensively by quarterback Kenneth Graham with 112 passing yards, completing 13-of-30 but was intercepted three times. Jerrell Washington led the Panthers in rushing with 73 yards on 19 carries. The Panthers defense was led by Obi Ezemma with a game-high nine tackles and Dominique Anderson added eight total tackles and a fumble return (36 yards) for a touchdown.

Virginia Union took the opening possession of the game 72 yards (11 plays) that ended with a Kenneth Graham 1-yard quarterback sneak for six points. Stephen Valasquez added the extra point for a Panthers 7-0 lead at the 10 minutes mark of the first quarter.

Virginia Union used a little trickery to keep their second possession of the game alive following a fake punt by Joe Reynosa. VUU’s Richard Rodwell dove in for a 1-yard touchdown with 47 seconds left in the period, increasing the Panthers lead to 14-0.

Bulldogs redshirt sophomore quarterback Jared Johnston dodged and weaved 11 yards for Bowie State’s first points of the afternoon. Sophomore Mario Diaz-Aviles added the extra point, cutting the deficit to 14-7 at the 14:31 mark of the second quarter.

Corwin Acker pretty much walked in from 8-yards out with 8:52 left in the second to pull within one at 14-13. The score was setup by an interception and 15 yard return by Gary.

Virginia Union’s Terrence Malone scored on 3-yard run and the Valasquez extra point pushed the Panthers lead to 21-13 with 5:11 remaining in the first half. The Panthers scoring drive was setup after a 15-yard personal foul against Bowie State senior Bekwele Amadi. Amadi was ejected and Virginia Union took full advantage from that point. Kenneth Graham picked off a Johnston pass and returned it 36 yards for a Panthers touchdown. The point after attempt was no good, but the Panthers lead grew to 27-13.

A Valasquez 20 yard field goal with two ticks left on the Hovey Field clock, extending the Virginia Union lead to 30-13 heading into halftime.

Virginia Union’s Anderson recovered a Tyrae Reid, Jr. fumble and rumbled 36 yards to give the Panthers a comfortable 37-13 lead with 3:16 left in the third quarter.

BSU’s Gary picked off his second pass of the afternoon at the Virginia Union 22 yard line and returned it to the Panthers 3-yard line at the 1:11 mark of the third. However, the Panthers defense stopped the Bulldogs threat, as Andre Kates intercepted the Reid pass in the end zone for a touchback to begin the fourth quarter.

Bulldogs sophomore Olademeji Layeni recovered a Virginia Union fumble at the Panthers 21-yard line. Unfortunately, Bowie State came up empty again, turning the ball over to the Panthers on downs. Layeni ended the afternoon as Bowie State’s second leading tackler with seven to go along with two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries.

The Bulldogs travel to Lincoln University of Pennsylvania next Saturday (October 27th) to face the Lions in a 1:30 pm Homecoming game. Lincoln (PA) suffered a road loss as well, falling 23-3 to Virginia State.

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