Florida A&M defeats Delaware State 52-30

From Florida A&M Sports Information:

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. | Ryan Stanley set two records and Xavier Smith entered the single-game record books as the 17th-ranked Florida A&M University football team rolled to their eighth straight victory with a 52-30 win over Delaware State on Saturday in a Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) at Bragg Memorial Stadium.

Stanley, who made the return to starting quarterback after a week off, tossed his record-breaking 58th career touchdown pass in the first quarter to Smith, surpassing Quinn Gray’s mark of 57. The redshirt senior completed the night by throwing his 25th passing attempt early in the fourth quarter, giving him 1,114 for his career, also breaking the mark of 1,113 held by Gray.

Meanwhile, Smith got into the record books as well as he caught nine passes for 184 yards, with four touchdowns. Those four scores put him in some elite company as he now holds the single-game record touchdowns, surpassing the previous record held by Cainon Lamb, Jacquay Nunnally and Ray Alexander.

Florida A&M (8-1 overall, 6-0 MEAC) raced out to a 14-0 first quarter lead as Azende Rey caught a 4-yard touchdown pass from Stanley with 5:35 left in the opening quarter and Smith caught a 25-yard strike just three minutes later.

The Rattlers added to the lead just six seconds in the second quarter as Stanley connected with Smith for a 16-yard touchdown, giving FAMU a 21-0 lead with 14:54 remaining in the first half.

The duo of Stanley to Smith worked again, this one for 59 yards, as the Rattlers extended the advantage to 28-0 with 12:43 left.

A Yahia Aly 37-yard field goal pushed the margin to 31-0 with 6:52 remaining, but the Hornets finally got on the board with exactly a minute left in the half on a 19-yard field goal by Jose Romo-Martinez.

Delaware State (1-8, 0-6) refused to go away quietly as the Hornets cut the margin to 31-16 after touchdowns by Thomas Bertrand-Hudon and Jahad Neibauer.

However, a Davonne Kendrick 6-yard touchdown run extended the lead to 38-16 with 2:20 remaining in the third.

The Hornets answered with a 5-play, 42-yard drive as Bertrand-Hudon scored on a 1-yard run, trimming the deficit to 38-23 with 10 seconds left.

Marcus Williams finally broke loose on a kickoff return as he went 94 yards down the right sideline to give the Rattlers a 45-23 advantage at the end of the third quarter.

Delaware State closed the gap to 45-30 after a 14-yard touchdown pass from Tylik Bethea to Bizzet Woodley with 10:33 remaining, but the Rattlers put the game away on their next drive as Rasean McKay tosses an 8-yard touchdown pass to Smith to give FAMU a 52-30 lead with just over seven minutes left.

Turning Point
The first half was dominated by Florida A&M as the Rattlers put up 31 points and never looked back.

Ryan Stanley went 13 of 19 passing in the first half for 199 yards and four touchdowns. Smith tallied five catches for 120 yards in the opening half.

After a slow start, Florida A&M put together a 9-play, 54-yard drive, capped by a Stanley 4-yard touchdown pass to Azende Rey with 5:35 left in the first quarter.

That scoring strike began a string of 31-unanswered points.

Three minutes later, Stanley broke the touchdown record and capped a 4-play, 64-yard drive with a 25-yard scoring strike to Smith.

Stanley ended the half with two more touchdown passes to Smith as FAMU got out to the big lead.
Inside the Numbers
> Florida A&M finished with 26 first downs

> The Rattlers amassed 465 total yards of offense, including 161 on the ground

> FAMU held Delaware State to just one first down in the opening quarter

> Bishop Bonnett paced the ground game with 48 yards on 12 carries

> Terrell Jennings added nine touches for 45 yards

> Ryan Stanley went 15 of 25 passing for 253 yards and four touchdowns

> Xavier Smith caught a game-high nine passes for 184 yards and four scores, including a 25-yard touchdown in the first quarter that gave Ryan Stanley the career touchdown record

> Marcus Williams caught six passes for 69 yards and returned a kickoff 94 yards for a score

> Elijah Richardson led Florida A&M with nine total tackles, along with one quarterback hurry and one pass breakup

> Delaware State finished with 17 first downs

> The Hornets registered 289 total yards, with 183 of those coming on the ground

> Thomas Bertrand-Hudon led the ground attack with 120 yards on 20 carries, along with a pair of touchdowns

> Tylik Bethea went 13 of 28 passing for 106 yards, with one touchdown and two interceptions

> Kwannah Kollie recorded four catches for 21 yards

> Brandon Carswell tallied six tackles to lead the Hornet defense

News & Notes
> This was the 35th meeting between Florida A&M and Delaware State

> The Rattlers improved to 20-9 all-time against the Hornets

> Florida A&M is ranked No. 17 in the STATS FCS Top 25 and FCS Coaches Poll

> The Rattlers continued to hold the top spot in the SBN Black College Football Poll and BOXTOROW Coaches Poll

> Florida A&M won its eighth straight game, the first time since the 1998 season won the team won 10 straight regular season games enroute to an 11-2 record

> Ryan Stanley surpassed Quinn Gray’s career touchdown passing record with two touchdown passes in the first quarter and now has 60 career touchdown passes

> Ryan Stanley now has 8,252 passing yards, which is already a school record

> Ryan Stanley surpassed Quinn Gray’s mark of passing attempts as he needed 25 to pick up the record and he achieved that mark on Saturday and now sits with 1,117 for his collegiate career

> Ryan Stanley is the FAMU record holder in completions and continued to build on the record with 675

> Xavier Smith now sits just 55 yards shy of 1,000 for the season

> Xavier Smith set a new FAMU single-game mark with four touchdowns, surpassing three All-Americans, including Cainon Lamb (three times), Jacquay Nunnally and Ray Alexander

> Ryan Stanley is now second in MEAC history in passing yardage as Howard’s Ted White owns the record with 9,200 yards

> Willie Simmons improved to 2-0 all-time against Delaware State

> The Hornets flew in on Saturday morning and arrived at the Tallahassee Regional Airport at 11 a.m. and departed for Dover, Del. after the game

> DSU travelled a total distance of nearly 2,000 miles through the air on Saturday

Up Next 
Florida A&M takes a week off to prepare for the final stretch. The Rattlers return to action on Nov. 16 for Senior Day against Howard. The two teams met last season in the Nation’s Capital with the Bison picking up a 31-23 victory.

Howard played host to North Carolina Central on Saturday and the Bison dropped a 28-6 decision. Howard visits South Carolina State next Saturdaybefore travelling to Florida A&M on Nov. 16.

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