Tigerville, S.C. – Matt Gravely knocked a 51-yard field goal as time expired to send the game into overtime but the Statesmen answered an NGU field goal with a touchdown to earn a 33-30 win over the Crusaders on homecoming weekend.
- Score: North Greenville – 30 / Delta State – 33 (Overtime)
- Location: Tigerville, South Carolina (Younts Stadium)
- Records: North Greenville 4 – 5 / Delta State 7 – 3
- Harold Hilton has sparked a solid NGU return game, but on Saturday the Freshman found the end-zone for the first time as Will Hunter found him for a score in the fourth quarter.
- North Greenville is 0-2 this season in over times after falling to Catawba earlier in the year.
- This is the second time North Greenville and Delta have played each other on the gridiron. The first meeting came in 2011 in the NCAA Division II playoffs.
- Delta State is now 2-0 over North Greenville, beating NGU by an average score of four points. The Statesmen won the playoff meeting 28-23 a game, which was played in Cleveland, Mississippi.
- Delta State is also known as “The Fighting Okra” a name adopted by the DSU Students.
How it Happened
- Collin Willis ran it in from eight yards less than two minutes into the game while Chris Robinson caught a 20-yard pass from Collin Willis to take a 14-0 lead.
- The Crusaders waited until the second quarter before their first score when Tracy Scott took it in from 32-yards to cut the Statesmen lead to 14-7.
- Scott’s touchdown was the first of three, second-quarter scores for NGU. Will Hunter found Christian Bruce for the second score of the day to even it at 14-14 while a field goal from 48-yards out from Gravely in the final seconds of the game earned NGU a 17-14 lead at intermission.
- NGU’s offense struggled in the first half, running just 15-plays for 18-yards. The Crusaders got it going in the second quarter though, amassing 186-yards of total offense with 17-points.
- The North Greenville defense also locked down in the second quarter, shutting out the Statesmen in the second quarter while allowing just 58-yards after giving a pair of scores on 108-yards in the opening frame.
- Both defenses pitched a third-quarter shutout. North Greenville forced three punts while DSU held NGU to a punt and held on an attempted fourth-quarter conversion.
- The Crusaders broke the scoreless trend in the opening minutes of the fourth frame when Will Hunter found Harold Hilton from four yards out to take a 24-14 lead.
- The Statesmen answered North Greenville with a pair of scores of their own to take a 27-24 lead, leaving just 23 seconds on the clock. Chris Robinson scored the first of the pair with a three-yard rush while Breck Ruddick took it in from one yard for the go-ahead score.
- Each of the two final drives for Delta State were clock killers, the first lasting 3:35 while the final drive lasted 4:44.
- North Greenville’s special teams came through on the final touchdown though, blocking the DSU extra point attempt to keep the game at just a field goal deficit.
- 23-seconds turned out to be all North Greenville needed. Will Hunter hooked up with Robbie Brown once and found Christian Bruce twice to move the Crusaders into field goal range.
- Matt Gravely would take it from there, putting through a 51-yard field goal as time expired to send the game into overtime.
- The Crusaders picked up six yards in the first overtime but were forced into a fourth down. Gravely would kick his third field goal of the day to take a 30-17 lead.
- The North Greenville comeback would fall short on Delta State’s ensuing possession. LaDarion Peterson scored from five yards out on second down to take the three-point victory.
The Good Guys
- North Greenville’s offense put up 438-yards of total offense against a Delta State Defense which had previously held opponents to 346-yards.
- NGU put up 169-yards on the ground and 269-yards through the air on the Statesmen with one rushing score and two through the air.
- Will Hunter finished the day with 257-yards on 19 completions. He found Christian Bruce and Harold Hilton for a pair of scores. Christian Bruce led the team with 131-yards on seven catches while Hilton had 32-yards on three receptions.
- Hilton also had a solid day returning kickoffs, finishing with 139-yards including a 63-yard return.
- Ashton Heard and Tracy Scott were both just shy of 100-yard rushing days. Heard ran for 98-yards on 14-carries while Tracy Scott ran for 96-yards on 18-totes. Scott also had the only rushing touchdown for North Greenville.
- Brandon Burger led North Greenville’s defense with 11-total tackles and a forced fumble. He also had a tackle for a loss.
- Eddie Studyvance and Devon Turman both had sacks for North Greenville. Studyvance also recovered a fumble, which led to an NGU score.
The Other Team
- Chris Robinson led Delta State with 184-yards on the ground with a touchdown. He was one of four players with a rushing score.
- LaDarion Peterson, Colin Willis, and Breck Ruddick also accounted for a score on the ground. Altogether the Statesmen ran for 252-yards.
- Tyrell Brown led the defense with nine tackles. The DSU defense had three sacks on the day and one interception as Brandon Tillman intercepted Will Hunter.
Next Time Out
- North Greenville will wrap up the 2017 season next Saturday when the Crusaders travel to Alabama to take on the West Alabama Tigers at 2 pm.