Savannah State University's football team showcased its full-throttle offense and tenacious defense as it routed Fort Valley State University to clinch the top spot in the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC).
Saturday night, fans and players were celebrating the victory in T.A. Wright Stadium. The team, which was expected to finish last in the conference, pulled away with the title after a win of 53-24.
The Tigers came out to force three turnovers and put up 27 unanswered points in the first quarter of the game. Fort Valley attempted to sling the ball with an already established high-power passing game, but SSU barraged the team with sacks, forced fumbles and interceptions.
The game focused Savannah State's top defensive lines, where speed rushers showcased their skillset. The entire defense made the Wildcats offense uncomfortable for the entire game.
The Tigers offense proved as lethal as they were against Virginia University of Lynchburg in week 2, where the team dropped 60 points. Quarterback D'vonn Gibbons proved his arm was just as dangerous as his legs, hitting his targets with the deep ball multiple times for touchdowns.
Running back D'Angelo Durham also put the team on his back by breaking off a 67-yard run for a touchdown.
The offensive line was as aggressive as ever, the linebacker core played expert sideline-to-sideline football and the defensive backs suffocated the Fort Valley wide receivers the entire game.
The Tigers crowned themselves top of the SIAC after project preseason polls set them to finish last.
The final game of the season, which is not a conference game, is on Nov. 9 at Edward Waters in Jacksonville.