Tech crushed Alcorn State in 41-0 shutout game
Georgia Tech started the 2018 season off strong with a 41-0 win against Alcorn State in their second-ever meeting this Saturday. The Yellow Jackets impenetrable defense kept the Braves running in place, and combined with their capitalization on Alcorn’s mistakes and pushing their rushing plays there seems to be a fire under the team’s 15 returning starters after last season’s disappointing 5-6 run.
Tech’s defense held the Braves for 146 yards the whole game, the second-lowest yards gained against them during head coach Paul Johnson’s leadership. “We were flying around today… I’m excited how this defense is going to look.” said junior linebacker David Curry, who recovered an Alcorn fumble for a Tech touchdown in the second half.
Tech began their 126th overall season with a promising win, starting with an early touchdown off a 26 yard rush from freshman running back Jordan Mason. On their next scoring drive, junior running back Nathan Cottrell rushed 25 yards, bringing the Yellow Jackets up to the 35-yard line. Quarterback TaQuon Marshall took the next 28-yard rush, putting Tech first in goal before the end of the first quarter.
Georgia Tech secured their second touchdown of the game in the second quarter with a 1-yard carry from Marshall into the end zone, finishing their 81-yard drive and bringing the score up to 13-0 after a failed extra kick from Shawn Davis. Junior running back KirVonte Benson also saw scoring action rolling into the end zone after a 5-yard rush for the next touchdown of the game, followed by a completed field goal by Brenton King to bring the score up to 20-0 with nine minutes left in the first half.
Marshall threw an interception with a little over a minute on the clock for the first half, giving the Braves possession on the 18-yard line. Shortly after, freshman safety Kaleb Oliver intercepted Noah Johnson’s pass, running it 25 yards into the end zone before several penalties on Tech brought them back, leaving them unable to score again before the end of the first half.
The Yellow Jackets came out of the gate strong in the second half senior Qua Searcy rushed 56 yards to the 8-yard line. Tech completed the drive on the next play as Benson rushed the final 8 yards for a touchdown, bringing the score up to 27-0. Quickly into Alcorn’s first drive on the second half, Brave’s freshman running back Marquise Forman fumbled the ball, recovered by Curry who ran the 15 yards in for another Tech touchdown, 34-0.
Tech continued their relentless onslaught against Alcorn State when Marshall threw a 24-yard pass to senior Brad Stewart in the end zone for another Tech touchdown to bring the final score to 41-0. Tech continued their trend of high rushing yard numbers, totaling 439 yards with Mason leading the stats with 85 yards.
Despite the team’s affinity for rushing, the Yellow Jackets are still seeing issues with completing passes. Although it is an improvement from last season, Marshall threw for only 104 passing yards and racked up 9 incomplete passes out of 18 attempts. The Yellow Jackets are now 1-0 on the season and hope to bring their winning momentum into their first away game Saturday, September 8 against South Florida.
By REBECCA WASHNEY