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October 06, 20181st2nd3rd4thFinal
Tennessee State7146734
Austin Peay72114749
1st Quarter
TSUTD00:00ROWLAND 23 Yd Pass From CROFT (ZITA kick)
2nd Quarter
TSUTD08:56CAUTHEN 3 Yd Pass From CROFT (ZITA kick)
TSUTD03:43ROWLAND 65 Yd Pass From CROFT (ZITA kick)
3rd Quarter
TSUFG09:03ZITA 38 Yd
TSUFG00:16ZITA 33 Yd
4th Quarter
TSUTD11:22ROWLAND 4 Yd Pass From HUGHES (ZITA kick)
Stats at a GlanceTSUAPSU
1st Downs2918
3rd Down Conversions8-185-14
4th Down Conversions2-30-0
Passing (Comp-Att)325 (24-51) 189 (7-15)
Rushing (Att)164 (43) 258 (49)
Total Yards489447
Fumbles Lost40
Tigers Drop 49-34 Road Decision at APSU
Saturday, October 6, 2018
Tigers Drop 49-34 Road Decision at APSU
Photo By Sam Jordan - TSU Athletics


Game 4: Tennessee State 34, Austin Peay 49
Records: TSU (2-2, 1-1 OVC), APSU (3-3, 1-2 OVC)
Venue: Fortera Stadium
Location: Clarksville, Tenn.
Weather: Clear, 86
Kickoff Time: 6:10 p.m.
Attendance: 12,201

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. --- Playing in front of a Fortera Stadium record crowd of 12,201, the Tennessee State football team was handed a 49-34 defeat at Austin Peay on Saturday night. The loss was the first for TSU in Ohio Valley Conference play this season.

TSU (2-2, 1-1 OVC) tied the score at 21-21 with 3:43 left in the first half before the Govs (3-3, 1-2 OVC) outscored the Tigers 28-13 the rest of the game.

For the second week in a row, quarterback Demry Croft tossed three touchdown passes - all in the first half. Chris Rowland, who had a career-high 179 receiving yards on 11 receptions, caught three touchdowns.

TSU’s defense was led by nine tackles from Vincent Sellers and eight from LaQuarius Cook.


  • TSU outgained APSU in total yards, 489-447
  • The Tigers threw for 325 yards and rushed for 164
  • TSU amassed 29 first downs and held APSU to 18
  • The defense held the Govs to 5-of-14 on third down conversions
  • The Big Blue recorded nine tackles for loss by 13 different players
  • TSU held on to the ball for 33:43 opposed to 26:17 for Austin Peay
  • The TSU defense forced six three-and-outs


  • Demry Croft started his fourth consecutive game for the Tigers
  • Croft finished 17-of-36 for 248 yards, three touchdowns and one interception
  • Croft added 35 yards on the ground
  • Micheal Hughes played in the third and fourth quarters
  • Hughes completed seven of 15 pass attempts for 77 yards and a touchdown
  • Chris Rowland registered career highs in receptions (11), yards (179) and touchdowns (3)
  • Rowland picked up 34 yards on punt returns to give him 213 all-purpose yards
  • Aaron Cauthen earned his first career touchdown on a three yard reception in the second quarter
  • Shawn McColley led all rushers with 78 yards on 11 carries
  • Vincent Sellers led the Tigers with nine tackles
  • LaQuarius Cook followed with eight, just ahead of Jahsun Bryant and Terry Straughter who finished with seven


  • The Tigers turned over the ball on their second series giving Austin Peay at the TSU 19.
  • The defense stood strong and forced a field goal attempt three plays later.
  • Malik Abdul-Haqq got a hand on the ball, blocking the 43 yard field goal attempt.
  • On the play, LaQuarius Cook gathered up the ball at the goal line and returned the ball 40 yards.
  • After a three and out, punter Kaleb Mosley hit a career long 48 yard punt to the APSU 12.
  • The Govs proceeded to travel 88 yards in seven plays for the first touchdown of the game.
  • The Tigers responded on the very drive, moving 74 yards in eight plays, scoring a touchdown on the last play of the quarter.
  • TSU took advantage of a personal foul to advance to the TSU 48.
  • The Big Blue used the legs of Demry Croft and Earl Harrison, as well as a pass to Al-Malik Moore to reach the Govs 23.
  • The Tigers evened the score as Croft hit a diving Chris Rowland in the end zone for a 23 yard touchdown pass.


  • Austin Peay took advantage of great field position after a TSU punt, needing just 27 yards to retake the lead, 14-7, on a three yard rush.
  • The Tigers started the next drive with competitions of 17 yards to Abdul-Haqq and 18 yards to Miles Cavitt.
  • Croft called his own number and ran for 25 yards to the APSU 12.
  • Two plays later, Croft scrambled to the right and found Aaron Cauthen for a three-yard scoring pass to even the score at 14-14.
  • The Tigers stopped the Govs on their next drive, but was stopped on a fourth down attempt at midfield.
  • The game would see three touchdowns in the next two minutes and 11 seconds of the game.
  • Austin Peay started with a 45 yard pass to the Tigers five and scored on the next play to take a 21-14 lead.
  • TSU responded on its first play from scrimmage as Croft hit Rowland at the TSU 45, allowing the junior receiver to outrun the defense for a 65 yard touchdown.
  • Austin Peay came back with its own big strike, a 73 yard pass play to the TSU one.
  • The Govs took a 28-21 lead one play later with 2:18 remaining in the half.
  • Croft hit DeVon Johnson for 16 yards and Treon Harris for another 15 yards, as the Tigers advanced to the Govs 32.
  • The TSU threat ended as they lost their second fumble of the half, entering the locker room at halftime down 28-21. 


  • The Tiger defense forced a three-and-out to open the second half.
  • The offense took advantage of a Governor pass interference to move into field goal range.
  • Antonio Zita converted on a 38 yarder to bring the Tigers closer at 28-24.
  • Austin Peay used a 10 play, 83 yard drive to increase their lead to 11, 35-24.
  • The Govs added another touchdown after a TSU turnover, increasing the score to 42-24.
  • After a Major Bellamy 38 yard kick-off return, Micheal Hughes entered to guide the Tigers.
  • Hughes completed his first pass attempt for 10 yards to Rowland.
  • After a pair of runs by Shawn McColley, Hughes found Rowland across the middle for 30 yards to the APSU 20.
  • The Tigers would get as close as the five, but had to settle for a Zita, 33 yard field goal to make the score 42-27 with 16 seconds remaining in the quarter. 


  • The Tigers pulled within one possession early in the fourth quarter with a 10 play, 62 yard scoring drive.
  • Hughes connected on a pair of passes to Harris and another to Rowland to move into the red zone.
  • The drive concluded as Hughes found Rowland in the front right corner of the end zone, giving the receiver three touchdowns on the night.
  • The defense forced its third consecutive three-and-out giving the Tigers the ball at their own 34.
  • APSU turned the Tigers fourth fumble of the game into a touchdown to extend their lead to 49-34.


  • Saturday’s game aired live on ESPN3.
  • TSU’s captains were Demry Croft, Micheal Hughes, LaQuarius Cook and Thomas Burton. TSU’s captains carried Christion Abercrombie's "6" jersey out to the coin toss.
  • TSU won the coin toss and decided to receive the opening kickoff.
  • TSU is 13-8 in the all-time series versus Austin Peay.
  • Tennessee State is receiving votes in the most recent STATS Top 25 and AFCA Coaches Top 25.
  • In TSU’s two Ohio Valley Conference games, the Tigers have blocked two field goals.
  • Tight end Aaron Cauthen made his first career start for TSU. Cauthen recorded his first career touchdown in the second quarter.
  • TSU quarterback Demry Croft tossed three first-half touchdowns, matching his three touchdown performance last week versus Vanderbilt.
  • Wide receiver Chris Rowland picked up his second career game with 100-yards receiving.
  • Safety LaQuarius Cook moved into sole possession of 10th place on TSU’s all-time tackles list.
  • TSU ran 94 total plays on offense. Since the start of the 2016 season, TSU has run 80 or more plays in a game three times (two have been this season). The Tigers ran 88 plays during a win at Eastern Illinois on Sept. 22, 2018.

TSU closes out their roadtrip with a game at Murray State on Oct. 13 game  at 1 p.m. 

(on the offense)
“I thought we did well. We just started messing up on dropping the ball and fumbling. I just feel like we have to work on that more moving forward. Other than that, I thought the offense did great.”

(on his big runs)
“Just anything I could get. There were open holes, and I ran through them. If I can shed someone off, I’m doing that. Just anything I can do to help the team win.”

(on the defense)
“We flew around. We played well, but there were some minor mistakes that put us in the situation we were in. We have a lot to clean up and it all starts Monday.”

(on starting in place of the injured Christion Abercrombie)
“With the incident, everything came fast for me. I had to get in the playbook a little more. I always tried to stay ready, so I had to step up.”

(on moving forward)
“I feel like from the mistakes, we’re going to learn. Me being a first-time starter, I feel like I’ll be more comfortable next week.”

(on scoring his first career touchdown)
“It feels great. I’ve been waiting on this since I got here. And I actually told a couple of guys, last week, I was in the end zone when Knox caught that ball and I told them, ‘Next game, I’m scoring.’ And I did.” 

(breaking down his touchdown catch)
“Just get in the end zone. The play was actually a run play, passing wasn’t even in the picture, but I saw Demry (Croft) scrambling, so I got to the end zone like I’m coached to do, got to the front pylon, he threw it to me, and I made a play.”

(on the team’s energy)
“It was rough. Coming in knowing we should have won the game [versus Vanderbilt], I think we played down to the level of our competition, and that’s one thing that we need to work on. We need to go and play every team like they’re Vanderbilt. We had a great game last week. That didn’t carry over to this week, unfortunately. We have a lot of work to do.”

(on the defense)
“We could have played a lot better from the running to the passing defense. We could have done a lot better than we did.”

(on putting it behind them)
“You have to use this as a learning curve. Learn from our mistakes and then go out and play hard in the next one. Don’t make the same mistakes again."