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Rams prevail in Classic finish

By   /   September 7, 2011  /   Comments

Staff reports

 

Mostly because of Albany State University’s quarterback Stanley Jennings’ last-minute heroics, the 2011 Music City Classic was just that – a classic.

Jennings capped a dramatic come-from-behind season-opening victory by thundering (he’s 235 pounds) 12 yards on a quarterback draw with 19 seconds left in the game to give the Golden Rams a 37-34 win over Savannah State in Macon, Ga..

Indeed, it was Savannah State’s theatrics – coming back from a 19-0 deficit – that had already made the Classic memorable.

Jennings led ASU to a huge early lead with 165 yards passing and two TD tosses in the first quarter. The Rams scored first on a 20-yard pass to Ronnie Tubbs, then Darryl Carey rushed for a 1-yard TD. The Rams missed two PATs, but made it 19-0 on a 13-yard TD reception by Octavius Staton.

The Tigers gained some momentum in the second quarter and early in the third quarter behind senior quarterback A.J. Defilippis, but only managed two field goals. Down 22-6, Savannah State then began converting long drives into touchdowns and scored the next 21 points.

Down 27-22 in the fourth quarter, the Rams continued to sputter until A.J. Cunningham’s fumble recovery led to a 5-year-old touchdown run by Devonta Osborne, giving ASU a 30-27 lead with 1:20 left.

Defillipis quickly answered, throwing a 25-year-old TD strike to Dylan Cook with 51 seconds left, putting Savannah State ahead 34-30.

But Jennings – the reigning SIAC player of the year — wasn’t done.

With new offensive coordinator and former ASU standout quarterback Uyl Joyner calling the plays, Jennings connected with Staton on a 38-yard pass, setting up his game-winning TD run.

Albany State, which improved its record against Division I Savannah State to 43-16-2, hosts Wingate at 7 p.m. Saturday in the Dr. Joseph Winthrop Holley Memorial Game.

THUNDERING RAMS: After a record-breaking 11-1 season in 2010, the Albany State Golden Rams kicked off 2011 with a dramatic 37-34 victory over Division I Savannah State during the Music City Classic in Macon. PHOTO BY REGINALD CHRISTIAN/ASU

 

GAME STATS

SSU 0 3 18 13 — 34

ASU 2 7 3 15 — 37

 

First Quarter

AbSt—Tubbs 20 pass from Jennings (kick failed), 9:02.

AbSt—Carey 1 run (kick failed), 1:47.

Second Quarter

AbSt—Staton 11 pass from Jennings (Torstenson kick), 13:30.

Sav—FG D.Williams 52, 11:43.

Third Quarter

Sav—FG D.Williams 26, 9:58.

AbSt—FG Torstenson 40, 6:34.

Sav—Babb 5 pass from DeFilippis (Gantt pass from DeFilippis), 4:01.

Sav—Givens 90 blocked punt return (D.Williams kick), 2:14.

Fourth Quarter

Sav—Lackey 64 pass from DeFilippis (pass failed), 11:29.

AbSt—Carey 6 run (Nelson pass from Jennings), 1:20.

Sav—Cook 25 pass from DeFilippis (D.Williams kick), :51.

AbSt—Jennings 12 run (Torstenson kick), :19.

A—7,105.

 

Sav AbSt

First downs 15 21

Rushes-yards 23-67 38-142

Passing 315 240

Comp-Att-Int 15-35-0 16-35-1

Return Yards 95 0

Punts-Avg. 2-37.5 4-25.3

Fumbles-Lost 2-2 0-0

Penalties-Yards 6-58 4-47

Time of Possession 25:32 34:28

 

Individual stats

RUSHING—Savannah St., Babb 16-37, DeFilippis 4-16, Barnes 1-6,

Kennedy 1-5, Strong 1-3. Albany St. (Ga.), Carey 14-51, Hoyte 10-33,

Edwards 6-27, Jennings 7-25, R.Brown 1-6.

PASSING—Savannah St., DeFilippis 15-34-0-315, Babb 0-1-0-0.

Albany St. (Ga.), Jennings 16-35-1-240.

RECEIVING—Savannah St., Lackey 3-115, Cook 3-77, Heyward 3-29,

Leggett 2-53, Babb 2-19, Barnes 1-21, Gantt 1-1. Albany St. (Ga.),

Staton 5-85, Tubbs 3-44, Jones 3-30, Ponder 2-18, Hoyte 1-29,

C.Taylor 1-20, Bell 1-14.

 

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  • Published: 1143 days ago on September 7, 2011
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  • Last Modified: September 6, 2011 @ 7:00 pm
  • Filed Under: Sports
 

About the author

Owner / Editor / Writer

Tom Knighton is the publisher of The Albany Journal. In November, 2011, he became the first blogger to take over a newspaper anywhere in the world. In August of 2012, he made the difficult decision to take the Journal out of print circulation and become an online news agency, a first for the Albany area.

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