Bears fall at the end in Norfolk State, 31-20
Game Recap: Football | | MSU Athletics Communications
NORFOLK, Virginia (Oct 30, 2021) –Juwan Carter completed 26 of 40 passes for 368 yards, including three touchdowns to help Norfolk State fend off Morgan State 31-20 on Saturday afternoon at William ‘Dick’ Price Stadium.
The Spartans improved to 6-2 on aggregate and 2-0 in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference game and won their sixth straight game. The Bears fell to 0-8 (0-4) for the first time since 1991.
Morgan won this one over to the Spartans’ high-octane offense.
Morgan scored in his first practice of the second half when Alfonzo graham rebounded on the outside for a 34-yard touchdown run. The Bears led 20-17 with 10:29 left in the third quarter. It matches the most points the Bears have scored since Week 2 against Tulane (Sept. 11).
Graham totaled 143 all-purpose yards and led the Bears on the ground with five carries for 56 yards.
The Spartans responded late in the third quarter when JJ Davis scored on a 3-yard TD to complete a 9-play, 62-yard practice that was almost 4 minutes behind. Norfolk led 24-20.
The Bears were walking and looking to regain the lead when a pivotal moment occurred. Boudreau was under a strong push when he threw a pass that was caught by Christian Ruffin and returned 25 yards to the Morgan 30 with 7:21 left in the game.
JJ Davis snatched a 20-yard rush to give the Spartans the first and goal of 10. Carter threw a 3-yard TD pass to Anthony Williams with 5 minutes left to extend the Spartans’ lead to 31-20 .
The Spartans added another takeaway in the last minute as RJ Coles scored his second interception of the season to seal the victory.
Morgan used a bit of dazzle razzle when Alfonzo graham took over from Neil Boudreau then hooked up with Kenneth Miller for a 68-yard pickup to push the Bears into Spartan territory. Six pieces later, Jabriel johnson putting the icing on the cake with a 2-yard scoreline to give the Bears a 7-0 lead with 6:32 left in the first quarter.
The Bears completed their second practice of the game when Boudreau’s pass was pushed to the line, leading to a Morgan punt.
In the scrimmage that followed, JJ Davis broke out of the backfield and caught a pass in the flat and passed the Bears defense on the sideline 86 yards for a touchdown. Josh Nardone’s extra point tied the game at 7-7 with 10:49 left in the half.
Norfolk hit the scoreboard again after an excellent Boudreau punt that pinned the Spartans to their own 1-yard line.
Carter designed an 11-play, 99-yard workout and connected with Ademola Faleye for a 15-yard touchdown. The Bears trailed 14-7 with 3:38 left at the half.
The Bears have picked up big footage of 3rd and 1 from midfielder, followed by a face mask penalty that moved the ball just outside the Norfolk red zone. Boudreau threw a 7-yard pass to Thomas marcus, however, the next point after KC Akubuo’s attempt was blocked. The Bears trailed 14-13 with 48 seconds left.
Norfolk finished the first half with a scoring when Nardone kicked a 21-yard field goal to give the Spartans a 17-13 lead at the break.
The Spartans’ offense racked up 341 yards in the first half and maintained a 16-8 advantage in the opening downs.
Christan Teague led the Bears defense with 11 tackles and a sack. Jae’Veyon Morton, Érick Hunter and Laurent Richardson had 10 tackles each.Elie williams added six tackles and a sack.
The Bears will look to enter the winning column when they host the Delaware State Hornets on Thursday night at 7:30 pm The game will be televised on ESPN2.
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Morgan State University, founded in 1867, is a Carnegie-ranked doctoral research institution offering more than 100 university degree programs ranging from bachelor’s to doctoral degrees. As Maryland’s premier public urban research university, Morgan serves a multiethnic, multiracial student body and seeks to ensure that the doors to higher education are opened as wide as possible to as many people as possible. For more information about Morgan State University, visit www.morgan.edu.