A balanced offensive attack and a strong defensive effort propelled Edward Waters to a commanding 37-13 victory over Morehouse College at Lakewood Stadium in Atlanta on Saturday afternoon. The win was the program’s first since rejoining the conference after an 86-year absence.
The Tigers accepted the invitation to join the conference in July and is immediately eligible to compete for championships. Edward Waters University (EWU) is perfectly aligned with short drives to Savannah State (2 hours) and Albany State (2.5 hours) and its longest drive (5 hours) to Tuskegee University.
The purple-clad Tigers’ defense held the Maroon Tigers (M-Tigers) to 237 yards of total offense and turned them over five times.
“I thought today they (the Defense) played lights out football,” said Head Coach Toriano Morgan (Tennessee State 2000, 2002). “They bounced back from last week (406 yards in a 35-45 loss to Lane) and had a great week of practice. We focused on certain things and they came out and executed it today. Today was a testament to the hard work they put in this week.”
EWU quarterback Cedquan Smith was picked off twice and Morehouse quarterback Michael Sims was picked off three times in this festival of turnovers. The two defenses combined for nine turnovers on the day.
Two of EWUs touchdowns resulted from fumbles forced by the defense. Ahmaud Jordan picked up a blocked punt and stumbled his way into the end zone. Freshman linebacker Ahmanuel Thorpe recovered a third-quarter fumble by quarterback Marquise Collins to set up Devin Bailey’s 35-yard touchdown run.
Junior EWU linebacker Cameron McClain picked off two passes from Michael Sims and sophomore defensive back Andrew Powers grabbed another.
Armani Maddox scored Morehouse’s first touchdown with a pick-six. Maddox stepped in front of a pass from Cedquan Smith at the 15-yard line and coasted into the end zone. Darie Smith’s interception was far more dramatic leaping over EWU receiver Damaris August to snag an almost certain touchdown.
Two Dimensions is Better
Neither of the three M-Tigers quarterbacks had much success against the Tigers’ defense. Combined the trio completed 10 of 27 passes for 93 yards. Running backs Earnest Davis and Frank Bailey, Jr accounted for 111 of the M-Tigers yards from scrimmage.
Aside from the two touchdown-producing drives, Morehouse crossed midfield only three times. Powers’ interception ended one of the drives and the halftime clock ended the second. The third drive in the fourth quarter ended at the Ed Waters 36-yard line after four consecutive incompletions.
Ferante Cowart and Steavenson Fernand out-rushed the home team by 4 yards. As a team, the visitors amassed 219 yards on the ground and another 220 in the air. Smith and David Johnson combined for 221 yards and two touchdowns. Smith hit Ferante Cowart for a 51-yard score in the first quarter. Cowart led all receivers with 4 receptions for 77 yards. Elisha Ammi caught a pass deflected off the hands and shoulder pads of M-Tigers defensive back Darien Pittman and scampered into the end zone.
EWU scored 27 points in the second half to put the game out of reach. The win ended Morehouse’s eight-game streak that began in 2005. The Tigers won the 2004 contest 27-20 in Atlanta.
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Photos by Jason McDonald, JM Photography for CORE360 Sports