HAMPTON, Va. — A two-touchdown swing in the third quarter proved to be the difference in the ballgame on Saturday night as 13th-ranked William & Mary defeated Hampton 24-14 in front of 4,412 at Armstrong Stadium.
The Pirates got on the scoreboard first following a blocked punt. Forcing a fourth down by the Tribe on its 31, Joseph Turner came through the middle of the line and blocked the punt giving Hampton possession on the Tribe 10. On fourth and goal from the one, Eric Carter pushed his way into the end zone to give Hampton (0-2) a 7-0 lead with 12:21 left in the opening quarter.
William & Mary (1-1) answered with a touchdown drive on 73-yards in seven plays. Steve Cluley connected with DeVonte Dedmon on an 18-yard pass to tie the game 7-all with 9:45 left in the first.
“We showed we could play with the 13th-ranked team in FCS tonight,” said Hampton coach Connell Maynor. “You can’t turn the ball over (two interceptions) or have as many penalties as we had against a team like William & Mary and expect to win.”
Both teams couldn’t put it in the end zone during the second quarter, but each team ended the half with missed field goal opportunities. The Tribe missed a 48-yard field goal with four minutes left in the half giving Hampton possession on its 30.
The Pirates responded with a 10-play, 57-yard drive down to the Tribe 13 with 10 seconds left in the half. A 31-yard field goal by Anthony Provost was deflected by Bill Murray and fell short as the teams went into the half 7-all.
“That field goal at the end of the half was a momentum changer,” said Maynor. “From a chance to go up 10-7 with the ball to start the third, to still tied hurt.”
In the third, the Tribe scored on its first two possessions. Cluley connected with Jack Armstrong on a 20-yard pass to cap a 13-play, 83-yard drive to give the guests a 14-7 lead with 7:50 left.
After forcing a Hampton three-and-out, the Tribe got possession at midfield and quickly pushed the lead to 21-7 as Albert Funderburke broke off a 40-yard run down on the second play with 5:34 left in the third. William & Mary started the fourth quarter finishing a nine-play, 73-yard drive as Nick Dorka booted a 25-yard field goal to lead 24-7 with 13:03 left.
Hampton finished the scoring with an 80-yard, 11-play drive as Jaylian Williamson connected with Rashawn Proctor for a seven-yard scoring pass with 3:12 remaining.
The Pirates were nearly balanced on the night running for 150 yards and passing for 184. Yahkee Johnson ran for 115 yards on 12 carries to lead the Pirates on the ground. Williamson was 22-of-39 for 184 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions. Proctor topped the Pirates with eight receptions for 61 yards. Devin VanDyke had nine tackles to lead the Pirates on defense.
Hampton will start Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference action on Saturday, September 17 in Washington, DC participating in the Nation’s Football Classic at RFK Stadium when they face Howard at 3:30 pm.
— Via Hampton University Athletics