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Rams Fall Short to the Broncos

In an epic defensive battle, Fayetteville State scored 10 second-quarter points to defeat Winston-Salem State 10-3 in the Rams final game of the 2021 season. It was only the third time since 1993 that the Broncos had won against the Rams in Luther "Nick" Jerald Stadium and only the seventh time FSU had claimed victory in that time period.

A Rams victory, coupled with Shaw's loss to St. Augustine's, would have given WSSU a share of the CIAA Southern Division title with the Broncos.  Instead, 'SU finishes with 3-4 CIAA record and 3-6 overall.  FSU finished 7-0 in CIAA play and 8-1 overall.

The game wasn't decided until the final horn.  Junior Ivan Caro, substituting for injured sophomore Jobanni Esparza, kicked a 22-yard field goal with 14:51 to play in the fourth quarter after a Rams drive stalled. 

FSU appeared to have the victory wrapped up, but senior Deiontae Jones, who is from Fayetteville, forced a fumble.  Sophomore Jaylen Ferbee-Gullate recovered at the Broncos 48 yard line.

With only a minute to play in the game and out of timeouts, the Rams advanced to the FSU 32 on a 16-yard run by junior quarterback Cameron Lewis.  He than completed an 11-yard pass to sophomore Nehemiah Williams to the 16-yard line.  Freshman Antjuan Collins caught a pass but was tackled for a one-yard loss as time expired.

WSSU had advanced to the FSU 32 yard line earlier in fourth quarter.  The drive stalled with Lewis throwing three incomplete passes.

The Rams defense turned in a stellar performance on a cloudy brisk afternoon with the wind swirling on the field.  Jones had 15 total tackles, including eight solos. Senior Ta'Shaun Taylor contributed 10 tackles.  Seven of those were solos and three resulted in a Broncos' loss. Junior defensive lineman Dantrell Barkley had seven assisted tackles and one-half tackle for a loss.

The Rams limited the high-powered Broncos to 124 yards rushing and 187 passing yards.  WSSU finished with an anemic 76 rushing yards and 88 passing yards.

Senior backup punter Dominique Graves had a spectacular game with seven punts, averaging 42.3 yards.  He airmailed a 73-yarder in the second half.