COLUMBIA, S.C. – The Benedict College Tigers put on an impressive display in front of a national television audience to cruise to a 48-6 victory over the Fort Valley State Wildcats on Thursday night in Charlie W. Johnson Stadium.
“To God be the glory. We found a way to win a football game,” said Benedict head coach Chennis Berry, who saw the 11th-ranked Tigers improve to 7-0 overall and 5-0 in the SIAC and hold a high-powered Fort Valley State offense out of the end zone.
“Getting the opportunity to be on a national stage, that’s always a beautiful thing. It helps with recruiting and showing our brand. Not just Benedict College football, but the whole college recruiting as well, and people might choose Benedict and be a regular student as well. Ultimately, our mission is simple: Win the day, find a way to go 1-0, and we were able to accomplish that.”
Berry said the Tigers felt good about their matchups with the Wildcats, who fell to 5-2 overall and 5-1 in the SIAC. Fort Valley State entered the contest averaging 37.2 points per game. The Tigers were able to force four turnovers and held the Wildcats without a touchdown.
“We had a good plan, and a good feel for what they were doing,” Berry said. “We did a good job, to hold an explosive offense like that out of the end zone. That’s just kudos to our guys. It all starts with our big guys up front. If we can win up front, and our second level can do their thing, then our back end can just bring it on home, and they were able to get some picks today and change the game by creating turnovers.”
Quarterback Aeneas Dennis threw for 311 yards, threw for a touchdown and ran for a touchdown. Deondra Duehart rushed for 112 yards on 17 carries and scored a pair of touchdowns. Ja’ron Kilpatrick had an interception return for a touchdown. Tom Piccirillo had a pair of field goals, kicking a 44-yarder, which matched his season long, and a 24-yarder in the first half as Benedict held a 27-3 lead at the break.
Billy Pierre had a 59-yard touchdown reception in the third quarter, and Israel Rhodes scored a rushing touchdown.
The Tigers are home again on Oct. 20 for their Homecoming showdown with Kentucky State. Kickoff is 2 p.m.