The Super Region II No. 1 seed Benedict begin their Division II playoff journey Saturday when they host the Wingate Bulldogs.
This was a season of firsts for Benedict finishing 10-0 for the first time in school history and winning their first-ever SIAC conference championship.
How Benedict got here
Benedict’s offense was sensational in the SIAC championship game recording 573 yards and 58 points in its win over Tuskegee.
This is nothing new for the Tigers who posted at least 50 in three games points and six others with 40 in a game.
Not only has Benedict been winning, but they have also done so in a decisive fashion. The Tigers have a 26-point margin of victory this season.
In what will be their first-ever Division II playoff appearance, the Tigers will open up with a tough draw against one of the top defenses in the country.
What to know about Wingate
They will be facing a Wingate team that is coming off an emphatic 32-7 first-round playoff win over Virginia Union. Wingate’s defense held down a Virginia Union offense that had previously been averaging 43.9 points per game.
The Bulldogs will be tasked with trying to limit yet another high-powered offense that has not scored less than 14 points all season.
Both teams are looking to advance to the regional semifinals for the first time in program history.
Players to Watch
Benedict QB Eric Phoenix
Phoenix had his best performance of the season in the SIAC championship game. He finished with 313 passing yards, along with 91 rushing yards and three total touchdowns. Phoenix will need to have a big performance to open up lanes for his running back tandem.
Benedict DE Loobert Denelus
In his playoff debut, SIAC Defensive Player of the Year Loobert Denelus will be looking to make a name for himself. Denelus also had a big day in the SIAC championship game, recording five tackles, 4.0 tackles for loss, and 3.0 sacks. This was one of three games he’s had this season with at least 3.0 tackles for loss and 3.0 sacks.
Wingate QB Shaw Crocker
While the Wingate defense will rightfully receive a lot of credit for their performance against Virginia Union, Bulldogs quarterback Shaw Crocker deserves some recognition for his play. He completed 14-of-21 pass attempts for 155 yards and two touchdowns. He has scored at least one touchdown in every game this season.
Wingate LB Davon Gilmore
The Wingate defense showed up against Virginia Union, recording seven sacks last week. Leading the way for the Bulldogs was linebacker Davon Gilmore who accounted for two sacks along with six tackles and four tackles for loss.
Leave a Reply