November 3 SWAC Football Recap

Around the SWAC
Grambling State 24, Mississippi Valley State 19
Alabama A&M 45, Arkansas-Pine Bluff 14
Alabama State 30, Texas Southern 21
New Mexico State 52, Alcorn State 42

Featured Game of the Day
Jackson State 34, Prairie View A&M 28
JACKSON, MS – In what was essentially an elimination game to be included in the SWAC Football Championship Game picture, the host Tigers built a 24-7 halftime lead and then needed to stave off a late charge by the Panthers.

Prairie View A&M (3-6, 2-3 SWAC) outscored Jackson State 21-10 in the second half, but ran out of time as the Tigers’ path to a SWAC East Division title became clearer on Saturday.

Now, Jackson State would need to win a pair of conference road games to claim the East and advance to the SWAC Championship.  The Tigers would need to win at Alabama State next Saturday and then win at Alcorn State the following Saturday on Nov. 17 in order to win the division.  The head-to-head victory against Alcorn State would be the tie-breaker they would need.

Jackson State senior quarterback Jarrad Hayes completed 17-of-27 passes for 151 yards with a touchdown pass to junior Romello Shumake.  Junior running back Jordan Johnson had eight carries for 74 yards including a 59-yard touchdown run before leaving the game.  Quitten Brown had 19 carries for 60 yards with two touchdowns.

Senior kicker Christian Jacquemin was good on a pair of chip shot field goals from 18 and 20 yards and was also 4-of-4 on PAT kicks.

Prairie View A&M quarterback Trazon Connley nearly rallied the Panthers from a 24-0 second-quarter deficit. Playing the final three quarters, Connley completed 19 of 30 passes for 165 yards and three touchdowns, and rushed 12 times for 110 yards and one touchdown in leading four touchdown drives.

Connley got PVAMU on the board prior to halftime. His six-yard scoring pass to Markcus Hardy with six seconds to play cut the Panthers’ deficit to 24-7 at intermission.

After a JSU field goal, Connley led a four-play, 81-yard drive capped off by his 72-yard scoring run to make the score 27-14 with just under six minutes to play in the third quarter.

Following a Jackson State touchdown, the Panthers answered in the fourth quarter. A 10-play, 65-yard drive ended with the first of two Connley-to-Zarrian Holcombe touchdown passes that again made it a two-score game at 34-21 with 11:41 remaining.

Late in the period, a nine-play, 54-yard drive ended with a Connley to Holcombe 11-yard scoring pass with 2:45 remaining for the final margin. JSU recovered the on-side kick and ran out the clock.

–Prairie View A&M Sports Information contributed to part of this report

Quick hits

  • Grambling State quarterback Geremy Hickbottom provided a mix of production through the air and on the ground.  The redshirt sophomore completed 12-of-24 passes for 208 yards and three touchdowns to three different receivers (Devante Davis, Kobe Ross and Darrell Clark).  Hickbottom was also second on the team in rushing with 10 carries for 99 yards.
  • The Tigers (5-4, 4-2 SWAC) converted 8-of-12 on third down and outgained the Delta Devils (1-7, 1-4 SWAC) 445-306 in total yards of offense.
  • Grambling State senior running back Johntavious Robinson ran a season-best 17 times for 130 yards.
  • Mississippi Valley State senior Booker Chambers recorded two receptions for 37 yards with a touchdown, six rushes for 51 yards, had two punt returns for a combined 42 yards and also returned a kickoff 36 yards to lead the Delta Devils.
  • Mississippi Valley State junior linebacker Tracey Thompkins led the defense with a team-high 15 tackles including two and half tackles for a loss.
  • With the victory, Grambling State has set up an opportunity to claim the SWAC West Division title in the Bayou Classic on Nov. 24 against Southern in New Orleans, La.  The winner of that game would be crowned the West Division champs and advance to the SWAC Football Championship.
  • Alabama A&M sophomore quarterback Aqeel Glass completed 21-of-42 passes for 359 yards and three touchdowns to three different receivers (senior Octayvious Miles, freshman Nathaniel Dell and sophomore Zabrian Moore).
  • Alabama A&M senior running back Trevon Walters led the Bulldogs (5-4, 4-2 SWAC) with 12 carries for 152 yards (12.7 yards per carry) and a touchdown.
  • Alabama A&M outgained UAPB 618-378 in total yards of offense as the Bulldogs averaged 7.9 yards per play.
  • Arkansas-Pine Bluff wide receiver Dajuan Miller led the Golden Lions (1-8, 0-5 SWAC) with six receptions for 106 yards.
  • UAPB running back Taeyler Porter entered the game as the SWAC’s leading rusher, but was held to just 15 carries for 40 yards.  Porter is averaging 119.7 rushing yards per contest.
  • Alabama State quarterback KHA’Darris Davis found success with his arm and his legs, completing 16-of-25 passes for 171 yards with two touchdowns (one to Jeremiah Hixon and another to Michael Jefferson) and two interceptions, but also rushed for 104 yards and a touchdown in 24 carries.
  • Alabama State (3-5, 2-2 SWAC) remained in contention for the championship picture the team outscored Texas Southern 9-0 in the critical fourth quarter when the game was tied at 21-21.  The Hornets would need to win out in their next three games (Jackson State, at Prairie View A&M and against Mississippi Valley State PLUS receive help with an Alcorn State loss against Jackson State on Nov. 17) in order to win the SWAC East Division.
  • Texas Southern junior linebacker Julian Marcantel led the Tigers (2-7, 1-4 SWAC) with 13 tackles, one tackle for a loss and one interception.
  • Texas Southern wide receiver Bobby Hartzog eclipsed the 100-yard receiving plateau for a fifth time this season as the graduate student captured four balls for 113 yards including a long of 68 yards.  Hartzog is the SWAC’s leading receiver with 835 yards and seven touchdowns as he has averaged 119.3 receiving yards per contest.
  • Alcorn State trailed FBS Independent New Mexico State 35-7 with 1:55 left in the second quarter, but attempted a second half rally as the Braves (7-3, 5-1 SWAC) pulled the score within 38-35 with 10:43 remaining in the fourth quarter before ultimately losing by 10 points.
  • Alcorn State outgained the Aggies (3-7) in total yards of offense 654 to 529 including 338-133 in total rushing yards.
  • Braves junior quarterback Noah Johnson completed 26-of-37 passes for 316 yards and four touchdowns to Dayall Harris, Raidarious Anderson, Chris Blair and De’Shawn Waller and added 16 rushes for 138 yards.
  • Waller also had 26 carries for 137 yards with two touchdowns on the ground.
  • New Mexico State quarterback Josh Adkins completed 32-of-44 passes for 396 yards with four touchdowns.
  • Alcorn State still controls its own playoff destiny.  A victory against Jackson State on Nov. 17 would clinch the SWAC East Division and home field advantage for the SWAC Championship Game on Dec. 1.

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