Howard Falls To Norfolk State
Norfolk, VA, October 29---Norfolk State capitalized on two key Howard mistakes to score all 26 of its points in the second half en route to a 26-7 win over Howard University in a Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference game at Dick Price Stadium before 14,003.
The victory was the first conference win for the Spartans (2-6 overall, 1-5 in the MEAC) and snapped a 10-game conference losing streak, and a seven-game home losing streak.
Norfolk State took the second half kickoff and marched 63 yards in nine plays to break a scoreless deadlock. Brandon Brooks connected with James Callahan from 20 yards out on the scoring play.
Howard (4-4 overall, 1-4 in the MEAC) made its first key mistake on the ensuing possession when punter Noam Dror (Montgomery Blair HS) had his punt blocked and returned deep into Bison territory, setting up a one-yard run by Daryl Jones to make it, 12-0 at the 5:21 mark of the third quarter.
Howard answered on its next possession when red-shirt freshman quarterback Darrell Turner capped off the drive with a one-yard plunge to cut the deficit to 12-7.
Then came the biggest play of the game. The Bison drove deep into Spartans’ territory and were threatening, but Daniel Hammett picked off a Turner pass and returned it 82 yards to put the game out of reach. It marked the second week that Hammett has returned an interception for a score. Last week, he returned one 92 yards for a score against Florida A&M.
Howard was led by senior running back Keon Coleman (H.D. Woodson HS), who led all rushers with 109 yards on 23 carries.
The Bison defense was victimized by the Norfolk State running game. Howard came into the game as the third ranked rush defense in 1-AA, allowing 57 yards per game. The Spartans, behind the efforts of Daryl Jones (22 carries, 91 yards), rolled up 165 yards on the day.
Turner, in his second start of his career for the Bison, completed 8 of 25 for 131 yards, no TDs and was sacked three times.
Sophomore linebacker Danual Pearce and senior safety Antoine Bethea, both natives of the Norfolk area, had outstanding games in a losing effort. Pearce led the Bison with 11 tackles while Bethea added 10.
NEXT UP: Howard hosts South Carolina State at 3:30 p.m. next Saturday in a game that will be televised live on ESPNU while the Spartans travel to Baltimore, MD to take on the Bears of Morgan State at 1 p.m.