Bowie State Suffers Heartbreaking 26-20 Overtime Homecoming Loss to Virginia State
By Gregory GoingsBowie State Sports Information Director
Bowie State redshirt sophomore Keith Brown (Temple Hills, Md. / Suitland HS) rushed for a game-high 120 yards and one touchdown, but Virginia State running back Lamont Britt (Norfolk, Va. / University of Virginia College of Wise) rushed for a 4-yard touchdown in overtime to spoil the Bulldogs Homecoming with a 26-20 victory.
Leading the Trojans on offense was quarterback Jarred Battle (Norfolk, Va. / Lake Taylor HS) with a game-high 201 passing yards, completing 21-of-32 (two interceptions) and one touchdown. Battle’s top target was Bryan Jones (Hayward, Calif. / Chabot C.C.) with seven catches for 39 yards. The Virginia State defense was led by Brandon Robinson (Hampton, Va. / Phoebus HS) with a team-high 11 tackles.
Virginia State amassed 422 yards (221 rushing) of total offense while limiting Bowie State to 287 (173 rushing).
Bowie State took a 6-0 lead when redshirt sophomore Jared Johnston (Dumfries, VA / Forest Park HS) teamed with junior Prince Onuoha (Riverdale, Md. / Frederick Douglass HS) on a 9-yard scoring strike in the corner of the end zone with 8:58 left in the first quarter. The extra point by redshirt-sophomore Mario Diaz-Aviles (Washington, D.C. / Delaware State Univ.) was blocked.
Devonte Hunt (Newport News, Va. / West Virginia Wesleyan College) scored Virginia State’s first points of the afternoon with 9:07 left to play in the second quarter on a 24-yard field goal.
VSU’s Jones pounded in from two yards out with 27 second left in the second quarter, shifting the advantage over to the Trojans at 10-6. Possession time in the first half of play was dominated by Virginia State, holding a 20:13 to 9:47 advantage.
Bowie State regained the lead on its first possession of the third quarter on Johnston to freshman Maxie Stevens (Washington, D.C. / Dunbar HS) 46-yard pass and catch, putting the score at 13-10 Bulldogs.
Virginia State went three and out on their next possession and Bowie State took advantage of the opportunity, driving 64 yards in eight plays, capped off by a one yard score by Brown at the 6:19 mark of the third quarter and a 20-10 lead.
Virginia State’s Hunt booted a 30 yard field goal with 13:35 remaining in the third to cut the Bowie State lead down to 20-13.
Bowie State appeared to be in the driver’s seat with just over two minutes left in regulation. Faced with a fourth and 14 from the Virginia State 21 yard, the Bulldogs decided to attempt a 38 yard field goal. Unfortunately for Bowie State, the Diaz-Aviles kick was blocked by Virginia State’s Rontrelle Knockett (Fort Barnwell, N.C. / Louisburg C.C.), giving the Trojans was last chance.
Following two short completed passes, Battle connected with Ja’von Smallwood (Virginia Beach, Va. / Bayside HS) for 23 yards down to the Bowie State 25 yard line. Battle then teamed up with Jacob Kellam (Virginia Beach, Va. / Norfolk State Univ.) for a 25 yard touchdown. Hunt calmly added the extra point, tying the game at 20-20 with 1:02 left on the clock.
In the overtime period, Virginia State won the toss and elected to go on defense first. The BSU Bulldogs ran three plays and attempted a fake field goal on fourth and 11 with no success.
Virginia State’s Britt scampered 21 yards down the sideline on the Trojans first play of overtime and followed up with the winning 4-yard touchdown run.
Bowie State’s Johnston completed the afternoon with 114 passing yards, completing 11-of-24 (one interception) and two touchdowns. The Bulldogs’ defense was led by redshirt freshman Antoine Young (Capital Heights, Md. / Suitland HS) and redshirt-junior Delante White (Temple Hills, Md. / Crossland HS) with a game-high 13 tackles each.
Bowie State hit’s the road for its next two divisional match-ups, making stops at Virginia Union University at 1 p.m. Oct. 20 then head north to face Lincoln University of Pennsylvania at 1:30 p.m. on Oct. 27.