Courtesy: Tuskegee University athletics
TUSKEGEE, Ala. __ Tuskegee University running back Johnny Morris took the game into his own hands on the first play of the second overtime, rushing for 25 yards up the middle to for his first touchdown of the year to help the Golden Tigers to a 28-22 win over Lane on Saturday at Abbott Memorial Alumni Stadium.
Following the score from Morris, the defense held the Dragons scoreless to secure the win as the seven-play drive ended on an incomplete pass to the end zone, broken up by junior Christian Ramsey.
Tuskegee’s offense struggled to establish any consistency for much of the game. TU led 14-0 at the half — with one of its touchdowns coming on a short field off an interception from Vincent Hill — and looked to be in danger when Lane tied the game at 14-14 two unanswered scores in the third. Neither team managed to get on the board in the fourth, forcing overtime for the second of three games inside of Abbott Memorial.
Lane put the pressure on in the first overtime, completing a fourth-and-eight pass for 20 yards, followed by a short yard run to take a 22-14 lead after converting on the two-point effort. But the Golden Tigers responded quickly, as Malik Davis connected with Noah Hart for a 28-yard score on second down. Davis connected with Miles transfer Marcus Lodge with a fade route in the back corner of the endzone on the next play to tie the game at 22-22 to force the second overtime.
Tuskegee finished with 321 yards total offense, led by Davis who finished 16-for-28 for 148 yards and one touchdown in his first start of the season. The back field duo of Morris and Zina Mulbah went for 110 total yards on the ground, with both accounting for 55 yards on 19 combined carries.
Lane had 414 yards total offense, but the Dragons also threw a pair of interceptions, including one deep in Tuskegee territory to end a potential scoring drive and punted the ball seven times in the matchup, compared to nine for Tuskegee.
The Golden Tigers won the opening toss and voted to receive the kickoff yet could not jump on the board off the initial drive, as the team was forced to punt after just four plays and just ten yards to start the game. Davis got the nod at quarterback after providing a spark on offense coming off the bench in the second half last weekend, however the offense never really got on track in the first half.
Despite the slow offensive start, the Tuskegee University defensive unit came out strong, forcing multiple turnovers for the fourth straight game to start the season. Sophomore linebacker Vincent Hill earned his second interception of the year to stall the first drive from Lane, giving Tuskegee the ball on the opposing 40-yard line.
The Golden Tigers did get on the board first however, taking a 7-0 lead thanks to good field position a 12-yard scamper from Mulbah, following the interception from Hill near midfield, the first turnover from the Dragons on the day.
Both offensive units hit a snag on their ensuing possessions, as both went three-and-out, before a third punt from Tuskegee University to close right before the close of the quarter. The Dragons looked to put themselves in scoring position on their next drive, starting at their own 11-yard line before an eventual 39-yard completion to find themselves inside the red zone, however Mikael King ended the promising drive with his third interception of the year and second turnover forced on the game with 13:22 in the second.
The Golden Tigers pushed down the field following the turnover, starting with a 30-yard run from Mulbah, who ran for a total of 44 yards on the possession. However, the seven-play drive ended after a pair of penalties knocked the team out of field goal range, as the special teams unit downed a punt from Duff at Lane goal line.
Following another punt from Lane, Tuskegee got on the board again before the half, as Davis went 3-for-4 on the drive for 30 yards, along with a pair of rushes, including a one-yard score to help TU take a 14-0 lead into the locker rooms.
Lane came out strong out of the break, marching down the field in to start the second half with a five-play 77-yard drive. Following a 22-yard pass on first down, the Dragons put together rushes of 11, 17, and 27 yards with the last being a touchdown run, making the score 14-7 with just 12:37 to play in the third.
After a failed fourth down attempt from Tuskegee University, Lane scored again on their next drive, as a 17-yard rush on fourth-and-two, followed by the extra point, tied the game at 14-14, a score that remained until overtime.
Two Golden Tigers recorded double figure tackle efforts in the win, as Hill led the way with 15 total tackles and the interception, followed by 13 tackles from Malik Moore, and eight tackles and an interception from Mikael King, his third interception on the year.