Crusaders down Concordia for Homecoming victory
Saturday, October 27, 2007
Crusaders down Concordia for Homecoming victory

TIGERVILLE, SCóNorth Greenville University grabbed its first home victory of the 2007 season Saturday as the Crusaders knocked off Concordia College 48-18 at Younts Stadium. The Crusaders improve to 3-6 with the win, while the Hornets fall to 2-7.

The Crusader defense led the way for North Greenville in the Homecoming victory. The Crusaders held Concordia to 248 yards of total offense while forcing five turnovers.

Offensively, North Greenville posted 487 yards of total offense.

Rashad Cummings and Eric Moeller led the Crusader offense again Saturday. Cummings rushed 31 times for 219 yards and two touchdowns. Moeller completed 19 of 24 passes for 182 yards and four touchdowns.

Travis NeeSmith and Travis Talbert led the receiving corps with six receptions and one touchdown each. NeeSmith led the way with 62 yards, while Talbert hauled in 43.

Defensively, Doug Wilson led the Crusaders with 10 tackles, five of them solo, and one interception. Shane Champion and Andre Bernardi each added nine tackles.

Anthony Gibson led the Hornet offense, completing 10 of 24 passes for 125 yards. Defensively, Corey Rue recorded 12 tackles for the Hornets.

The Crusaders got on the board early in the first quarter as Moeller connected with tight end Josh Johnson on crossing route in the end zone off a play action play. Michael Searsí PAT gave North Greenville a 7-0 advantage with 10:09 remaining in the first quarter. The touchdown was set up when Concordia mishandled a snap when attempting to punt, allowing the Crusaders to take over on the Hornet 28-yard line.

North Greenville struck again after forcing Concordia to punt for the second time. Moeller hit NeeSmith on a stop route to the right side. NeeSmith beat the cornerback to the outside and made his way to the end zone for the 26-yard score. The PAT attempt missed wide right, leaving the score at 13-0 at the 3:12 mark in the first quarter.

Concordia answered with 9:36 remaining in the second quarter, driving 66 yards in 11 plays. Eric Taylor capped the drive with a one-yard touchdown run. The PAT attempt failed, making the score 13-6.

The Crusaders responded by driving 80 yards in 12 plays, capped by a three-yard play action touchdown pass from Moeller to Jarvis Garrett. Searsí PAT made score 20-6 at the 3:06 mark in the second quarter.

Concordiaís offense wasted no time driving back down the field for a touchdown, driving 58 yards in two plays for the touchdown. Anthony Gibson hit John Halman for a 52-yard pass to set up A.J. Wardís six-yard rushing touchdown. The PAT attempt failed, making the score 20-12 with 2:21 remaining in the first half.

North Greenville, not wanting to be outdone, answered with a quick drive of their own. The Crusaders went 78 yards in four plays, capped by a 53-yard run by Cummings for the touchdown. Searsí PAT gave the Crusaders a 27-12 advantage going into halftime.

Turnovers marred both squads coming out in the second half. North Greenville drove to the Concordia nine-yard line before losing a fumble. Five plays later, the Crusaders took possession back when Wilson intercepted a Gibson pass that was tipped into the air twice. The Crusaders looked like they would convert the take-a-way into a touchdown on the ensuing drive, but a bad pitch from Moeller to Cummings resulted in another turnover. Four plays later, Matt Moore gave North Greenville possession again by intercepting Gibsonís pass and returning it 40 yards to the Concordia 28-yard line.

The Crusaders capitalized this time as Moeller connected with an out-stretched Talbert in the back right corner of the end zone for a 10-yard touchdown on the fourth play of the drive. Searsí PAT put North Greenville up 34-12 at the 1:50 mark in the third quarter.

Concordia answered with a seven-play, 65-yard drive capped by a four-yard touchdown run by Ward. The two-point conversion failed to keep the score 34-18 with 14:05 remaining in the game.

After exchanging punts, Cummings lit up the scoreboard again for the Crusaders with a 43-yard rush at the 9:00 mark in the fourth quarter. Searsí PAT gave the Crusaders a 41-18 lead.

Concordia fumbled on their own seven-yard line on their next possession. Three plays later Curtis Dewberry scored from two yards out. Searsí PAT made the score its final of 48-18 with 5:56 remaining in the game.

North Greenville will travel to Montgomery, AL next Saturday to take on Faulkner University.