The Alcorn State University Braves (0-1, 0-0) played their first game in over 600 days at Center Parc Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia against the North Carolina Central Eagles (1-0, 0-0) at the 15th MEAC/SWAC challenge in front of 15,000 fans. The competition puts together one team from the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference and the Southwestern Athletic Conference and sufficed to say the MEAC compiled their 11th victory in 15 tries continuing its dominance over the SWAC.
Both teams began the first quarter by feeling one another out until Braves’ quarterback Felix Harper hit wide receiver Juan Anthony with a 20 yard touchdown pass at the 10:25 mark and with kicker Cristofer Thompson’s extra point Alcorn was on the board first with a 7-0 lead.
The Eagles responded in the second quarter with a score of their own with 23 seconds left in the second quarter when quarterback Davius Richard scored on a 6 yard run to the end zone and with kicker Adrian Olivo’s PAT (point after attempt) the game was tied at 7.
The third quarter saw both teams reignite their offense. The first to do it was North Carolina Central at the 10:25 mark when Richard scored yet again on a 1 yard scamper to the promised land but Olivo’s extra point was blocked which made the score 7-13. The Braves scored 8 minutes later when running back Niko Duffey scored on a 4 yard pass from Harper and with a successful PAT from Thompson the score was now 14-13, Braves.
The fourth quarter saw the Eagles score first as Olivo booted a 28 yard field goal through the uprights at the 13:39 mark making the score 14-16, Eagles. The final nail in the coffin for the Braves happened at the 11:21 mark when defensive back Brandon Codrington scored on a 77 yard punt return and with Olivo’s extra point the final score was 14-23, Eagles.
Some key players on offense for the Braves were Felix Harper who finished the game 17/27 for 154 yards, running back Stafford Anderson who had 11 carries for 128 yard rushing and wide receiver Juan Anthony Jr. who had 5 receptions for 66 yards. Defensively, defensive back Keyron Kinsler led all Braves with 7.5 tackles.
Alcorn’s next opponent will be the Northwestern State Demons (0-0, 0-0) on Saturday, September 11th at 7:00 pm at Spinks-Casem Stadium.