TURNOVERS AGAIN THE DEMON FORTIGERS IN CIRCLE CITY CLASSIC DEFEAT
INDIANAPOLIS --- Turnovers again proved fatal for the Tennessee State football team to help lead the way to a 16-3 loss to North Carolina A&T in the 22nd Circle City Classic Saturday evening in the RCA Dome. The Tigers committed five turnovers for the second straight week in absorbing the setback. The Tigers fall to 1-4 overall with the loss. A&T improves to 2-3 overall. "It is frustrating that we are hurting ourselves with the turnovers," said TSU first-year head coach James Webster. "Our defense, except for a couple of big plays, played well again." TSU had 232 total yards to the Aggies 193 total for the game. After allowing A&T 92 yards in the opening period which was keyed by a long run, the Tiger defense would give up just 101 yards over the remaining three quarters. Senior middle linebacker Wesley Holmes spear-headed the Tiger defense and was named the Classic Most Valuable Defensive Player. Holmes had 12 tackles, three tackles for loss, and a pair of quarterback sacks in a losing effort. Andre Davis made his first collegiate start at quarterback for the Tigers and was 5-10-2 passing for 66 yards. Richard Hartman came on in the second half in relief and was 5-13-2 for 49 yards. Freshman running back Javarris Williams had 79 yards on 11 carries and had a 46-yard run that set up TSU's points early in the second half. Fred Burnette had five of the Tigers' 10 receptions for 59 yards. TSU had numerous opportunities for points in the game, but had to settle for a lone field goal, 30 yards out from true freshman kicker Eric Benson at the 9:48 mark of the third period. Quante Speight broke loose for a 57-yard run to the TSU 9-yard line to set up the game's first score. Quarterback Rico Watkins scored on a 4-yard run on a misdirection keeper. Joseph Arroyo's PAT gave A&T a 7-0 lead at the 3:44 mark of the opening period. The lead expanded to 10-0 as Arroyo booted a 33-yard field goal at the 11:45 mark of the second period. A turnover led to A&T's next score. On a third down play, quarterback Andre' Davis fumbled the exchange from center and the loose ball was scooped up by defensive end Rickie Lewis who scampered 70 yards for a touchdown. A bad exchange led the score 16-0 with 7:58 remaining in the first half.