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Randolph-Macon Football Rallies To Defeat Emory & Henry, 20-17, Saturday In ODAC Action

Gunner Griffith eludes a tackler.
-photo courtesy of Dave Grace

ASHLAND, Va. – The Randolph-Macon College Football Team (2-1, 1-0 ODAC) bounced back from a 10-7 halftime deficit to earn a 20-17 Old Dominion Athletic Conference win against Emory & Henry College (0-2, 0-1 ODAC) on Saturday afternoon.

The Basics
FINAL SCORE – Randolph-Macon 20, Emory & Henry 17
LOCATION – Ashland, Virginia
VENUE – Day Field
RECORDS – Emory & Henry (0-2, 0-1 ODAC); Randolph-Macon (2-1, 1-0 ODAC)

How It Happened
- After forcing the Yellow Jackets to punt in the first possession of the game, E&H's offense drove into R-MC territory to set up a 47-yard field goal by senior Matt Seals (Rogersville, Tenn.) at the 7:51 mark of the opening quarter.
- Emory & Henry extended its lead to 10-0 with 9:48 to go before the half. With first and goal at the nine, junior quarterback Hunter Taylor (Summerville, S.C.) called his own number and scampered into the end zone.
- Randolph-Macon closed the gap to 10-7 on a 45-yard catch-and-run by Tre Frederick from Burke Estes with 4:37 left on the second quarter clock.
- Coming out of the break, the two squads traded missed field goals and E&H saw a drive stall at midfield. The Jackets put together another quick strike with Estes finding Sam Tanner with a 65 yards pass to set up a two-yard plunge for the score and a 13-10 lead.
- The Wasps answered on the next drive, gaining all of their yardage through the air. Taylor linked up with junior wideout Gunner Griffith (Bluff City, Tenn.) for a 14-yard score, giving the Wasps a 17-13 lead with 9:43 left in the contest.
- On the ensuing possession, the Randolph-Macon offense again got to work. After manufacturing a first down on three plays, the Yellow Jackets broke off a 53-yard touchdown reception as Estes hit Justin DeLeon for the go-ahead 20-17 score with 7:51 to play.
- Both teams had opportunities in the waning minutes of the contest, but the score would hold and RMC would claim victory.

Emory & Henry Individual Leaders
- Taylor threw for 166 yards on 10-for-28 passing with a touchdown and an interception. He hit four different receivers on the afternoon with senior Derrick Yates (Abingdon, Va.) catching a team-high four passes for 64 yards.
- Freshman T.J. Tester (Moneta, Va.) led the ground game with 76 yards while Taylor added 56 yards and a score.
- Freshman Grayson Overstreet (Moneta, Va.) played both ways in the contest, rushing for 30 yards on six carries and making eight tackles.
- A trio of Wasp defenders made seven stops with sophomore defensive lineman Donovan Pinnix (Eden, N.C.) notching 1.5 sacks for 10 yards and forcing a fumble. Seniors Josh Fleenor (Christiansburg, Va.) and Cecil Parham (Petersburg, Va.) also put up eight tackles.

Randolph-Macon Individual Leaders
- Estes finished the game with 211 passing yards on 10-for-21 passing with a pair of scores. He spread the ball evenly amongst six receivers with DeLeon and Tanner leading the way.
- Frederick rushed 24 times for 107 yards, but was held out of the end zone while Jordan Foster had two runs for 45 yards.
- Defensively, Matthew Vergara made seven tackles and picked off a pass while Calvin Whitehead had seven stops including two behind the line of scrimmage.

A Deeper Look
- Seals' 47-yard field goal is the fifth-longest make in program history. The Cherokee High School product also has the second-longest kick in the record books – a 49-yard make against Washington and Lee in 2017.
- R-MC finished with 371 yards of total offense, compared to 322 for E&H but the Wasps held an 18-16 lead on first downs. The Jackets took advantage of three big plays on the afternoon to grind out the victory.

 Up Next
- Emory & Henry will remain on the road next Saturday when it visits Bluefield College in what will be the first official meeting between the Wasps and Rams. Kickoff is scheduled for 6:00 p.m.