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Defensive shutout gives Tigers 40-0 victory

By Khalifah Muhammad
On November 21, 2019

The Tiger defense allowed just 134 yards from Mississippi Valley State University

The Grambling State University football team picked up another win last weekend to add to their record.

Both the offense and defense shined as they worked in tandem to beat the Mississippi Valley Delta Devils 40-0.

This marks the sixth win in a row by the Tigers after starting the season 0-4.

Allowing the Devils just 134 yards of offense, the shutout showed the adjustments made after the G-Men narrowly beat Alcorn State in overtime the week prior.

With the win, the team sits just behind Southern University for the top position in the SWAC East.

The game began with Grambling possessing the ball. Due to the ejection of first string starter quarterback Geremy Hickbottom against Alcorn, Charles Wright started the game for the G-Men.

On the first drive, the group marched downfield and were able to take an early 7-0 lead on a 27-yard touchdown pass to De’Vante Davis.

Setting the tone early, the Tiger defense forced a three-and-out when the Mississippi Valley offense took the field.

After a missed field goal to, neither team was able to score, giving their punters more work.

It wouldn’t be until the end of the first quarter that the Grambling offense scored again, this time coming on a 25-yard pass to senior receiver Dequarius Thomas.

With the made PAT, the Tigers took a 14-0 lead into the second quarter.

Through the entirety of the second quarter, both teams struggled to produce meaningful drives and neither could score.

Again, the punters got more work and kicked the ball back and forth during the quarter.

It would not be until the last seconds ticked off of the clock that GSU kicker Miguel Mendez converted on a 20-yard field goal, giving the Tigers the 17-0 lead into halftime.

The third quarter started with another three-and-out by Mississippi Valley, giving the ball to the Tiger offense after using just over fifty seconds of the clock.

Quarterback Geremy Hickbottom was placed under center for Grambling and helped drive the team downfield. 

Mendez tacked on an additional three points after the Delta Devils put together a goal line stand, forcing the field goal.

With the game 20-0, the next drives resulted in turnovers for both teams as the Grambling defense came up with an interception and forced a turnover on downs.

After eventually settling down, the Tigers came up with another touchdown on a 5-yard quarterback rush.

Up 27-0, the defense performed yet again, this time on a Joseph McWilliams forced fumble. However, the Tiger offense fumbled on the very next possession.

Interestingly enough, as the drive began for the Delta Devils, McWilliams forced another fumble, but his offense was not able to convert on the turnover.

After the eventful last possessions, neither team were able to score for the rest of the quarter.

As the game entered the final quarter, the Tigers were looking to close the game out and secure a victory.

With Mississippi Valley in possession of the ball, they pieced together a drive and set themselves up in the Grambling territory.

Yet again, the Tiger defense made a play and Ryan Fields intercepted the ball at the one-yard-line and set his team up with nice field positions. This time, the offense used the defense’s momentum and moved upfield for yet another touchdown, this on a 23-yard rush by Kevin Dominique.

Forcing Mississippi Valley to punt, the offense came and scored another touchdown on back-to-back possessions with at 34 yard rush by Keilon Elder and a missed PAT to end the scoring for the game 40-0.

The victory keeps the Tigers in championship contention with their next game will be in New Orleans for the annual Bayou Classic against Southern University on Nov. 30.

The winner of the matchup will face Alcorn State in the SWAC championship. With the momentum from six straight victories, the team will enter and hope to keep moving for their first SWAC Championship game since 2017.

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