Fort Valley City State was able to take an early lead and then largely control the Johnson C. Smith offense in a 23-13 win in the inaugural Florida Beach Bowl.
The Fort Valley offense got right to work, marching 75 yards in 12 plays on the game’s opening drive that saw two 4th down conversions and ended on Brandon Marshall’s 2-yard plunge that put the Wildcats up 7-0.
A safety on a Johnson C. Smith added two points to the Wildcat lead making the score 9-0. FVSU took advantage of the subsequent possession when quarterback Kelvin Durham to Brandon Marshall extending the Fort Valley lead to 16-0.
Johnson C. Smith finally got on the board late in the third quarter when a 30-yard field goal off the foot of Alejandro Morilon-Garcia brought the score to 16-3. Fort Valley answered back on the first play of their next possession when Durham found Jaren Lawson on an 84-yard touchdown down the right sideline that pushed the Wildcats’ lead to 23-3 with 4:16 left in the third quarter.
The Golden Bulls were able to get on the board again on their next possession, ending a 6-play, 57-yard drive on a Jacob Newman 6-yard touchdown run that cut the lead to 23-13. JCSU would be able to draw no closer as they were unable to sustain a drive in the fourth quarter that rose to the level of threatening to score.
Fort Valley quarterback Kelvin Durham was named the game’s MVP, as he completed 10 of 14 passes for 167 yards and 2 touchdowns.