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Saturday, September 21, 2013

Bulldogs Hold On For 16-10 Football Home Opening Victory Over Concord

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BOWIE, Md. - Playing at home for the first time this season, the Bowie State University Bulldogs
football team had to hold until the very end before claiming a 16-10 victory over the Concord University Mountain Lions.

The loss, Concord's first of the season, drops the Mountain Lions' record to 2-1 overall on the year. Bowie State improves to 2-1 with the victory. As a team, Concord held advantages over Bowie State in first downs (16-9), total yards (266-208) and passing yards (175-42).

Redshirt junior Keith Brown (Temple Hills, Md.) rushed for a career-high 149 yards and scored two touchdowns to lead Bowie State on offense. Redshirt sophomore Antoine Young (Washington, D.C.) racked up a game-high 14 total tackles to pace the Bulldogs defense. Redshirt sophomore Curtis Pumphrey (Laurel, Md.) was credited with eight total tackles on the afternoon and fellow redshirt sophomore Paxton Queen added six total tackles.

The Mountain Lions were led by junior wide receiver Darrick Williams (Baltimore, Md.) who caught eight passes for 67 yards. Sophomore wide receiver Tiko Henderson (Lancaster, Va.) caught five passes for 49 yards.

Redshirt freshman quarterback Brian Novak (College Park, Md.) went 22-for-47 for 175 yards. Novak also ran for 29 yards and a touchdown. Fellow redshirt freshman Sam Wright (Roanoke, Va.) ran for a team-best 33 yards on 14 attempts.

Defensively, Concord was paced by junior defensive lineman Keith Ferguson (Bluefield, W.Va.), who made 10 tackles including two tackles for loss. Junior linebacker Gary Saylor (New Market, Md.) added eight stops while senior linebacker Jake Lilly (Bluefield, W.Va.) and sophomore defensive lineman Ervin Moore (Lancaster, S.C.) each chipped in seven tackles.

After trading possessions for much of the first quarter, Concord was able to strike first midway through the first quarter with a 24-yard field goal by sophomore kicker Andy Ellington Scott Depot, W.Va.), capping off a 12-play, 39-yard drive which featured two successful fourth-down conversions for the Mountain Lions.

Bowie State answered back at the start of the second quarter with Brown's 15-yard touchdown run that gave BSU the 7-3 lead with12:01 remaining in the opening half. Bulldogs redshirt sophomore Nkonyeasua Uwandi (Berwyn Heights, Md.) picked up an interception on a tipped pass during CU's next drive with the end result being a 27-yard field goal by junior Mario Diaz-Aviles (Washington, D.C.) that extended Bowie State’s lead to 10-3 at the 8:43 mark of the second quarter.

It appeared as if Bowie State was about to pull ahead by another touchdown when the Bulldogs recovered a Concord fumble at the CU three-yard line, but Richardson picked off a Jared Johnston (Dumfries, Va.) pass in the end zone.

However, Bowie State was able to hold the Concord offense and get the ball back. The Bulldogs defense forced a Mountain Lions three and out. Following a punt by Concord’s Andrew Huska (Ford City, Pa.), BSU’s Brown rumbled 72 yards in the other direction to give the Bulldogs a 16-3 lead heading into halftime.
Neither team's offense was able to establish a drive in what turned out to be a scoreless third quarter and Concord would head into the fourth quarter still trailing by 13 points.

Concord won the battle for field position for the majority of the third quarter and it would pay off in the fourth.

The Mountain Lions started their first drive of the final quarter from the Bowie State 43-yard line and proceeded to march down the field with a 10-play drive that ended with Novak scrambling three yards on fourth down for the CU touchdown to cut the lead to just six points at 16-10 with 10:38 left in regulation.

Concord had four more chances to score the go ahead touchdown, but was unable to finish off the comeback attempt in part due to two turnovers inside the Bowie State red zone. The last play of the game saw a Novak pass from the Bowie State nine-yard line intended for Henderson fall incomplete.

The Bulldogs return to action next Saturday (9/28) hosting the Falcons of Saint Augustine’s University. Game time in Bulldogs Stadium is 1 pm.

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