October 2019, Sports

Falcons rally to top Livingstone, earning first victory of the season

Quarterback Jaylen Jones led a second-half comeback

RALEIGH, N.C. (Oct. 12) – Quarterback Jalen Jones (Sr./Baltimore, MD) came off the bench to lead a second-half comeback as Saint Augustine’s University toppled Livingstone College 20-12 in CIAA football action Saturday at the George Williams Athletic Complex.

Jones threw two touchdown passes and ran for another to help the Falcons overcome a 10-0 halftime deficit. The Falcons scored 20 consecutive points in the second half to capture their first victory of the season. It was also the first win for interim head coaches Okesa Smith and Reginald Cooper.

The SAU quarterback completed 15 of 29 passes for a season-high 224 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions after entering the game in the first quarter with the Falcons down 3-0. He also led the team with 62 rushing yards on 14 carries and a score.

Keyed by Jones and a stingy defense, the Falcons dominated the second half after trailing by 10 at halftime. The Blue Bears’ only points in the half occurred on a two-point conversion off a blocked extra point. The Falcons outgained an opponent (352-308) for the first time this season and intercepted three passes.

The Falcons (1-2 South Division, 1-5 overall) climbed back in the game on the opening drive in the third quarter. Jones scored on a one-yard sneak and Andre Labat (Fr./Miami, FL) kicked the extra point to make the score 10-7.

SAU took its first lead early in the fourth quarter on a 10-yard touchdown pass from Jones to Aakiel Greer (Fr./Kosciusko, MS). Labat’s extra point put the Falcons ahead 14-10.

On their next drive, the Falcons capped an 11-play, 75-yard march with a 20-yard scoring pass from Jones to Dontarian Evans (Fr./Gainesville, FL) to extend the lead to 20-10 with 5:20 remaining. The Blue Bears stayed in striking distance, however, after scoring on the point-after-attempt return.

The Blue Bears (1-2 CIAA South, 4-2 overall) regained possession two more times, but the SAU defense prevented a late comeback. Troy Gethers (Jr./Essex Co., NJ) ended the game with an interception on the last play.

Gethers was one of three defensive backs who picked off Livingstone passes. Kyle Levere (Jr./Anne Arundel, MD) intercepted a pass in the first quarter and Teyon Davis (So./Landover, MD) intercepted a pass in the SAU end zone in the third quarter, which prevented the Blue Bears from adding to their 10-7 lead.

Durrell Nash (Jr./Memphis, TN) led a stout SAU defense with a game-high 14 tackles. The SAU linebacker also broke up four passes. Defensive end Desmond Quinerly (Jr./Raleigh, NC) finished with eight tackles, including a sack, and defensive lineman Tim Montague (Fr./Raleigh, NC) had two sacks.

Offensively, Charles Edmond (So./High Point, NC) caught two passes for 81 yards and Greer had three receptions for 57 yards and a touchdown for SAU.

For Livingstone, Miles Hayes was 20 of 45 for 198 yards, but was picked off three times and sacked three times. Jordan Cartwright had five catches for 71 yards for the Blue Bears, who had a short touchdown run nullified because of a false start penalty.

After two straight home games, the Falcons will hit the road for two consecutive weeks starting with a CIAA matchup against Winston-Salem State University in High Point, N.C., on Saturday, Oct. 19. Game time is 6 p.m.

Saturday’s game against Livingstone was designated as Military Appreciation Day.

— Office of Sports Information