Lacy pounds A&M to victory
Kaderius Lacy rushed for a career high 189 yards and a touchdown, while Alabama A&M came up with the big plays on special teams to hang on against Alabama State, 20-19.
The Bulldogs wasted no time in striking first. Kaderius Lacy broke off a 44-yd scamper to set up Chance Wilson’s field goal from 19 yards out and the Bulldogs led 3-0.
On the Hornets second possession, Clarence Morris picked off the ASU pass and the Bulldogs regained the football and held the early momentum. The Hornets came in as the perceived ball hawks, but the Bulldogs aggressiveness continued to pay off.
Melvin Payne recovered a quarterback fumble by ASU and A&M wasted no time in capitalizing. Sparkman High graduate Terrance Pride took the handoff on the end around from Deauntae Mason and scampered 19 yards for the touchdown. A stunned Alabama State was down 10-0 in the first quarter.
A 13 play, 69-yard drive by the Bulldogs to open the 2nd quarter propelled A&M to a 17-0 lead before first place Alabama State. The Hornets retaliated with a 10-play drive leading to a 48-yard field goal to get on the board at 17-3.
The Bulldogs dominated the time of possession mainly behind the running of tailback Kederius Lacy, who scored the second Bulldog touchdown of the first half. A&M quarterback Deauntae Mason threw only four passes in the first half, completing three. Clarence Morris blocked an ASU field right before the half and A&M carried a 17-6 lead into the locker room.
A&M picked up where they left off in the third; driving 75 yards in 12 plays, culminating in a Chance Wilson 22-yard chip shot field goal to make the score 20-6 in favor of the Bulldogs.
The Hornets finally responded with their first touchdown of the game at 4:40 in the third with a 72-yard drive of their own. QB Rodriguez plunged in from a yard out to close the gap to 20-13. Two minutes later, Kejuan Riley intercepted his seventh pass of the season, leads FCS, and Alabama State was in business. Hornets receiver Nick Andrews had another fine game, catching nine balls for 134 yards. Still, A&M was able to keep the ASU all-time receiving leader out of the end zone.
Trailing 20-13 with 11:54 to go in the fourth quarter, Quarterback Devin Dominguez ran 77 yards on a keeper for a touchdown and with the extra point Alabama State would tie the game. However, A&M blocked the point after and still led 20-19.
Like many previous Magic City Classics, this one would come down to the end.
The blocked extra point would be the deciding play as the Bulldogs celebrated their sixth win in a row and defeating their arch rivals from Montgomery. A&M moves into first place in the SWAC East with a 6-1 record, matching Alabama State, but holding the tie breaker. The Bulldogs travel next week to Lorman, Mississippi to battle always tough Alcorn State. Kickoff is set for 2pm.
Kedarius Lacy was named offensive MVP, while defensive end Corey Hart, who recorded two sacks, was voted defensive MVP of the game.