ECSU Football Dominates Second Half Defeating Central State, 34-23 in Season Opener

Sept. 2, 2017

Final Stats

WILBERFORCE, OHIO -- A dominating second half from the Elizabeth City State University football team, gifted them a 34-23 victory over Central State University in McPherson Memorial Stadium, Saturday afternoon in its season opener.

Elizabeth City State opened up the flood gates in the second half, recording two quick scores. Freshman quarterback Navarro Price came into the game after senior quarterback Dequan Neal had to set out for a play because of the helmet rule and hooked up with junior receiver Sayquan Holder for a 34-yard touchdown bomb that tighten the ballgame at 16-14, CSU.

An interception in the next series by sophomore defensive back BJ Harrington gave ECSU a boost and the ball at Central State's 17 yard line. ECSU marched the ball down the field 78-yards in seven plays to record its second score in the third quarter off a junior receiver Brandon Flint 21-yard touchdown scamper from Neal.

A second interception from ECSU's Harrington in CSU's end zone, led to another ECSU touchdown. Neal connected with junior wide out Deon Yarborough on a five-yard touchdown pass, but the extra point was blocked, gifting the Vikings a 27-16 lead over Central State.

A two-yard scamper from Neal gave ECSU a commanding 34-16 lead over the Marauders. Central State scored again but it wasn't enough to come back from an eleven-point deficit, 34-23. Harrington sealed the deal for ECSU with his third interception on the day tying an ECSU record with 1:09 remaining in the contest.

ECSU fell behind quick in the first half, 14-0 before junior running back Gregory Bryan took a 64-yard run to the house for his first ECSU career touchdown with 6:58 remaining in the second quarter. Neal went 8-for-18 passing with one interception in the half.

Bryan finished the half with 86 yards in two rushes. Junior linebacker Vincent Thomas led the defensive charge going into the half with seven total tackles, including one for a loss.

Bryan led ECSU's running game with 106 yards on four carries and a touchdown, while junior linebacker Miacah Cooper, III led the defense with 12 tackles, including a sack and a tackle for a loss. Neal finished the game with 231 yards on 20-for-35 passing, including an interception, two touchdowns passing and one rushing. Holder led all receivers with 98 yards and a score; while Yarborough added 78 yards on six catches and a score.

The Vikings will return home for its season home opener next week, hosting UNC-Pembroke for its Military/ECSU Alumni NFL Day. Game time is slated for 1 p.m.

Follow Elizabeth City State Athletics via its official website at: www.ecsuvikings.com to get pre and post-game stories and updates. Also follow us on twitter at: @ECSUVikings and on Instagram: @ecsusports