JACKSON, Miss. – The Grambling State University football team stepped into the win column on Saturday evening as they defeated Jackson State, 44-21, at Mississippi Veterans Memorial Stadium.
“I can’t say enough, how much our character really reveals itself, in this tough time that we have been going through. I’m so happy for them, but we still have a lot of work to do,” said Grambling State head coach Broderick Fobbs.
The first half of the game started off slow, as both Grambling and Jackson State remained scoreless in the first quarter. With Jackson State still having possession of the ball leading into the second, the opportunity for them to score first was seized as running back Jordan Johnson rushed for two yards into the end zone. After the PAT by Josh Littles, Jackson State led, 7-0.
On Grambling State’s second drive, Geremy Hickbottom threw 2-for-6 for 28 yards and even rushed for 11 yards, but it didn’t result in a touchdown. It was Miguel Mendez’s 27-yard field goal that gave GSU their first three points on the board.
With less than a minute remaining in the quarter, Hickbottom (while on the quarterback keeper) fumbled the ball, and although it was recovered by Rashad Jenkins, Grambling State who would take the lead of the game as De’Andre Hogues blocked a 37-yard field goal attempt. Devanir Martin, who was at the right place at the right time, picked up the ball and secured a 70-yard scoop and score into the end zone for GSU. Following Mendez’s PAT, Grambling State was up 10-7 at halftime.
Lyndon Rash led GSU in rushing with 39 yards, while Jalon Jones paced his team with 75. Hickbottom was 9-of-13 for 73 yards, while Jones threw 11 passes for 28 yards. Donald Johnson led Grambling State in receiving yards with 17, while Warren Newman led Jackson State with 10. Joseph McWilliams led GSU with five tackles, and Keonte Hampton tallied six.
Grambling State went through two drives before they were able to score again; on the third Hickbottom’s pass connected to Lyndon Rash for six yards for the touchdown. Following the PAT, GSU led, 17-7, with a 10-point deficit toward JSU.
Grambling State decided to stretch their lead, this time by 17, as Lyndon Rash rushed 59 yards into the end zone in a two play, 63 yards, 0:29 possession of the ball scoring drive. Following Mendez’s PAT, GSU now led, 24/7.
Not looking to see a blowout on their own field, Jackson State answered with a four-play, 65-yards, 1:43 possession scoring drive after Derrick Ponder’s pass to Ra’Mei Wallace was complete for 52 yards. Following Adrian Salazar’s field goal, the score was now 24-14, with GSU still leading.
The fourth quarter belonged to GSU as Grambling State decided to widen the gap in points deficit between them and Jackson State some more, with three more scoring touchdowns. Hickbottom connected with Lyndon Rash for 10 yards into the end zone, and Joseph “Baby Joe” Williams intercepted a pass and returned the ball for 44 yards. With 8:16 remaining in the quarter, Dominique rushed for 31 yards into the end zone. Only two of three Mendez’s PAT kicks were good, but the lead had now expanded to 30 points (44-14).
Jackson State was able to score one last time as Ponder’s pass to Newman for 10 yards was complete. Salazar’s PAT was good, and the updated score was now 44-21.
Courtesy: GSU Athletics