Tallahassee, FL - Tennessee State used special teams and defense to hand the Florida A&M Football team their first loss of the season, as the Tigers defeated the Rattlers, 27-7, here Saturday afternoon at Bragg Memorial Stadium.
This was 12th time in the series that FAMU has faced Tennessee State in Bragg Memorial Stadium with today’s win giving the Tigers their eighth win in Tallahassee.
The last time, FAMU faced TSU in Bragg Memorial Stadium was in 1997, with the Rattlers pulling out a 43-28 win over the BlueTigers from Nashville, Tenn.
David Van Dyke gave TSU their first score of the game as he recorded a 46-yard interception return for TD with 12:30 remaining in the first quarter, giving the Tigers a 7-0 lead, after the Jamin Godfrey PAT.
Six minutes later, the Tigers would increase their lead as Tim Broughton would score from 10-yards out, capping an eight-play, 65-yard drive, and increasing TSU’s lead to 14-0, after the Godfrey PAT.
FAMU would score their only points of the game as Damien Fleming found Lenworth Lennon in the end zone for a 36-yard TD pass, with 13:59 remaining in the second quarter, cutting TSU’s lead to 14-7, after the Chase Varnadore PAT, capping a nine-play, 68-yard drive by the Rattlers.
14 seconds later, TSU would increase their lead on a Mart Stevenson, 95-yard kickoff return for TD, giving the Tigers, a 21-7 lead after the Godfrey PAT. The Tigers would score their final TD of the game on a 14-yard run by Telvin Hooks with 7:54 remaining in the third quarter. Brandon Denmark would block the Godfrey PAT attempting, for the 27-7 final.
One bright spot for the Rattlers in the game was a blocked 42-yard field goal attempt by Patrick Aiken with 7:14 remaining in the second quarter. In addition, the Rattler defense would cause three sacks for 27 yards, six tackles for loss, one forced fumble, one interception, two pass breakups and blocks and one quarterback hurry.
Michael Ducre led the Rattler defense for the second straight week as he garnered 12 total tackles with 11 of them being solos, followed by John Ojo with 11 total tackles with nine of them being solo tackles.
FAMU was led by James Owens as he rushed for a team-high 24 yards on nine carries.
Fleming led the Rattlers' aerial attack as he completed 12 passes in 27 attempts with one interception and one TD, while Lennon led the Rattler receivers with five receptions for 66 yards and one TD.
TSU was paced by Broughton as he rushed for 124 yards on 17 carries with one TD, followed by Hooks with 77 yards rushing on 12 carries and one TD.
Ronald Butler, the Tigers' signal caller finished the contest with 131 yards passing as he completed 12 passes in 21 attempts with one interception.
FAMU will return to action on Saturday, Sept. 14 as the Rattlers will welcome Samford University to Bragg Memorial Stadium in a 2 p.m. start.