UWA Tigers finally “close door” in 24-23 win

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Contributed Report

MONTICELLO – West Alabama rushed for 300 yards on 60 carries, as the Tigers picked up their first win of the season with a 24-23 victory over Arkansas-Monticello (1-3, 0-2 GSC) on Saturday at Convoy Leslie Cotton Boll Stadium in Monticello, Ark.

“If there ever was a whole-team win, this was it,” UWA Head Coach Sam McCorkle said. “They kept having opportunities and we finally closed the door on them.”

West Alabama struck first with a two-yard touchdown run by Marcus Ross with 13:15 left in the first quarter, capping a four-play 65-yard scoring drive to open the game. Arkansas-Monticello’s Albert Urbina connected on a 27-yard field goal on the ensuing possession to cut the UWA lead to 7-3 with 8:51 remaining in the first quarter.

The Boll Weevils took a 10-7 lead with 4:44 left in the first quarter when UAM quarterback Cory Allred connected with Vick Barrett for a three-yard score. The Tigers regained the lead with 2:35 remaining in the second quarter, as Todd Wilson completed a 29-yard touchdown pass to Will Harter to put UWA up 14-10. West Alabama’s Randall Jones then intercepted an Allred pass in Boll Weevil territory, setting up a 38-yard field goal by Tonya Butler as time expired in the first half to give UWA a 17-10 advantage.

Arkansas-Monticello tied the game at 17-17 with 5:53 remaining in the third quarter when UAM’s Dwayne Perkins scooped up a Wilson fumble and returned it 40 yards for a Boll Weevil touchdown. Fifty-one seconds later, Demathus Ledet returned an interception 34 yards for another UAM score to put the Boll Weevils up 23-17, as the extra point attempt by Urbina was no good.

Ross then scored his second touchdown of the game to give UWA the lead at 24-23 with a 12-yard scamper on the first play of the fourth quarter to end all scoring.

Ross led all UWA rushers with 134 yards on 25 carries with two touchdowns, as he became the first Tiger to rush for 100 yards or more in a game since 2000. Wilson finished the game with 60 yards passing (3-of-9 pass attempts), including one touchdown and two interceptions.

Jones led the UWA defense with 16 total tackles, including nine solos and one interception for a touchdown. Zeb Ellison added nine total tackles, including three solos and a half of a sack.

Allred led the UAM passing attack, completing 16-of-29 passes for 215 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Robert Jackson led the Boll Weevil receiving corps with five catches for 53 yards, while Chris Humes added five receptions for 36 yards.

Perkins led the Boll Weevil defense with 14 total tackles, including five solos and one fumble return for a touchdown. Andrew Wamble added 11 total tackles, to go along with one fumble recovery and one interception.

“I’m really proud of our guys,” McCorkle said. “We are going to start from here and grow from it.”

The Tigers (1-3, 1-1 GSC) return to action on Saturday when they host Arkansas Tech at 1:00 p.m. in Tiger Stadium.

– Jason Hughes