The Annual Labor Day Classic between the Texas Southern University (TSU) Tigers and the Prairie View A&M Panthers ended with the Panthers extending their winning streak to eight with a 40-23 win.
The game was delayed for an hour and fifteen minutes due to lightning in the area.
Lightning struck quick once the game started, however, during the opening kickoff.
TSU’s Jacorey Howard took the opening kickoff 98 yards to pay dirt.
But as the late ABC sports commentator Keith Jackson would say, “Whoa Nellie,” as it was called back due to a block in the back by the Tigers.
Nevertheless, TSU shook off the penalty and QB Andrew Body led his team on a 4 play, 44-yard opening drive. Running back Jacorey Howard got to the end zone again on a 25-yard run behind right guard Blake Centers’ clearing block.
The Tigers led 7-0.
The Panthers responded with their own opening drive.
QB Trayzon Connely led his team on a 11 play, 65-yard drive with RB Jaden Stewart scoring off the left side on a 4-yard run. Stewart picked up 41 yards on 4 carries on the drive, tying the score 7-7.
TSU’s second possession was only three plays, and they punted on 4th down. Prairie View’s Bryce Turner blocked the punt and the Panthers set up shop on the TSU 15-yard line. Two plays later, QB Trayvon Conley scored on 13-yard run and the Panthers went up 14-7 to end the first quarter.
TSU went three plays and out on their next possession. The Panthers took over at their own 15-yard line and fumbled on the first play. TSU took over at the PV 15-yard line and ran Ladarius Owens 3 consecutive plays. On 3rd and 5, at the PV 8-yard line, Owens scored on an 8-yard run that tied the score at 14.
On the Tigers’ next possession, they had a nice 6 play drive going, but QB Body fumbled. The Panthers recovered and went on an 8-play drive, with running backs Jaden Stewart and Ahmad Antoine doing most of the damage. Antoine had a 21-yard run and Stewart broke one off for 30 yards. Ahmad finished off the drive with a 6-yard touchdown run. Prairie View took a 21-14 lead.
The Tigers went on an 8-play drive and punted on 4th down. The Panthers went on a 9 play, 62-yard drive that ended with a 41-yard field goal by Carlos Villagomez that ended the half with PV leading 24-14.
Both teams punted on their first possessions of the second half.
On Prairie View’s second possession of the 3rd quarter, on the 3rd play of the drive QB Travon Connely dropped back to pass and saw an opening on the left side and raced 70 yards for the score. Connely was injured on the play and never returned to the game. PV went up 31-7.
On the Tigers’ next possession, QB Andrew Body’s pass was intercepted by Isiah Hamilton for a pick-6 touchdown return that made the score Prairie View 37-14.
On TSU’s next possession, Body was sacked for a loss on 4th and 1. PV took over with a new quarterback, Chris Herron. Herron dropped back to pass on 3rd and 11 and was picked off by Raheem Fuller, who took it to house for a pick 6.
TSU cut the lead to 37-20.
PV went three and out and punted. Suddenly, the momentum switched to the TSU side of the field. TSU took over and went on a 10 play, 32-yard drive that ended with a 39-yard field goal by Richard Garcia. The score was 37-23 to end the 3rd quarter. Both teams punted on back-to-back possessions in the 4th quarter.
PV went on a 12 play, 61-yard drive, running the football and eating up clock that ended with a 21-yard field goal by Carlos Villagomez that pretty much sealed the win for the Panthers.
The final score was PV 40 – TSU 23.
It was a hard-fought game between two backyard rivals.
Prairie View made more plays and ultimately came out on top. TSU made some untimely turnovers and penalties that PV capitalized on.
Look for the Tigers to get in the win column next week against North Texas.
Prairie View travels to Abilene to take on Abilene Christian.
Congrats to PV Head coach Bubba McDowell on getting his first win as a head coach.
“I Just Tell It Like It Is”
Burl “The Coach” Jones