ORANGEBURG, S.C. – Florida A&M dominated for much of its non-conference matchup against South Carolina State before holding on for a 20-14 win on Saturday.
The win was the Rattlers’ third straight versus the Bulldogs.
“Big time win, a lot of adversity, but the guys found a way,” said Head Coach Willie Simmons. “It’s the mark of a championship ball club. These guys showed character tonight, they showed grit, and they showed resilience in the face of all kinds of adversity. I don’t know the official stats, but a whole lot of penalties on our end to not very many on their end, but our guys found a way to get it done, and that’s what it’s all about.”
The Rattlers dominated the first half on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball as they took a 17-0 lead into the half. On the second drive of the game, Jeremy Moussa connected with Xavier Smith for a 63-yard touchdown, giving Smith his seventh touchdown of the season.
Then later in the second quarter, Moussa and Jah’Marae Sheread linked up for a 35-yard touchdown. Moussa threw for 228 passing yards in the first half, and both of his touchdowns came in the same half.
From a defensive standpoint, the defense only allowed 85 total yards in the first half and only five first downs. BJ Bohler also recorded his first interception of the season during the first half.
Taking a 20-point lead into the fourth quarter, the Rattlers forced a punt, but on the ensuing drive, Jeremy Moussa threw his first interception as one of the nation’s leading interceptors, BJ Davis, came up with his first interception of the game.
The Bulldogs took advantage of the turnover finding the end zone on a 14-yard touchdown pass from Corey Fields to Shaq Davis. On the Rattlers’ next drive, Moussa had another pass intercepted by the Bulldogs’ BJ Davis, which the Bulldogs would capitalize the next play on a 44-yard touchdown pass to Shaq Davis.
The Dark Cloud Defense came up when they needed to most on the Bulldogs’ final drive of the game, which started on their own 14 and made their way to the FAMU 29 before the Rattlers stopped them on a 4th and 5 to take over and kneeled the clock out.
Courtesy: Florida A&M Athletics