Prairie View A&M (4-2, 3-1 SWAC) took the game in the third quarter as they erupted for 21 points and defeated Grambling State University (0-6, 0-3 SWAC) 31-3 in the annual State Fair Classic inside the Cotton Bowl.
“It’s a tough job to keep them up after that,” said George Ragsdale. ” I’m just waiting on us to play three phases at one time. I know we got some kids out there with the ability to win some games.”
Mistakes became a factor early for the Tigers. On their opening play from the Panthers 17 yard line, quarterback D.J. Williams found an open Cedric Skinner for 23 yards, but after a monstrous tackle by Panther linebacker Chuck Obi, Skinner fumbled.
The Tiger defense was able to hold the Panthers to only a field goal to lead 3-0.
On the Panther’s subsequent drive, quarterback Jerry Lovelocke extended PV’s lead to 10-0 after he found Courtney Brown for a 12-yard touchdown.
Lovelocke completed 27 of 40 passes for 246 yards, two touchdowns and one interception in the game.
Early in the second quarter, the G-Men tightened the gap 10-3 after Williams led them to their only scoring drive, which ended with a 33-yard field goal from freshman kicker Johnathan Wallace.
Williams completed 21 of 42 passes for 216 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions.
With 24 seconds left in the half, the Tigers squandered a scoring opportunity after missing a 20-yard field goal.
In the third quarter, within seven minutes, PV’s lead jumped from 7 to 28.
On the Panthers second drive of the quarter, Lovelocke found Deandre Cooper for a 23-yard touchdown that made the score 17-3.
The Tigers’ next drive resulted in a Juwan Martin fumble on a lateral pass from Williams. Panther defensive back Jamespaul Bryant recovered and ran it back for a PV touchdown. This put the Panthers ahead 24-3.
On the Tigers’ next drive, Williams’ pass was intercepted by Foster Brown II and returned to the Grambling 37. Lovelocke then capped a five-play drive with a five yard rushing touchdown.
The Tigers will travel to Indianapolis to face Alcorn State (4-2, 2-1 SWAC) Saturday in the Circle City Classic. Kickoff is at 3 p.m. in Lucas Oil Stadium.