A Very American Coup By Michael – Louis Ingram, Editor-in-Chief...
Phoenix Soar Pass Aggies 45-0
GREENSBORO, N.C. — Playing their final home game of the season against the Phoenix of Elon University, the North Carolina A&T Aggies were trying to finish on a winning note especially since a win would have been their first of the season.
Unfortunately, like the entire 2006 season, it was not to be. Wes Pope threw for two touchdowns and ran for one as the Elon offense tallied 395 yards of total offense and crushed the Aggies 45-0 in front of some very disappointed Aggie fans and alumni at Aggie Stadium.
Elon got the scoring going late in the first quarter as Pope led the Phoenix on a eight-play, 82-yard drive. Pope ran into the end zone on a three yard run to give Elon a 7-0 lead with 2:18 left in the first .
The second quarter saw even more scoring from Elon early and often. After a Phoenix drive stalled, Elon added a 34-yard field goal from Andrew Wilcox to make it 10-0 with 8:16 left in the second.
The Aggies had a golden opportunity to score after Elon fumbled the ball in their own territory, but couldn’t convert and were forced to punt. After an A&T punt, the Phoenix got a great return and started their drive on the Aggies’ 38.
It took the Phoenix one play to score again. Michael Mayers found a hole in the Aggie defense and scampered 38 yards for the touchdown. It gave Elon a commanding 17-0 lead over the winless Aggies with 6:01 left in thet half.
The Aggies offense continued to be inept and were forced to punt on several occasions. Meanwhile, the Phoenix got the ball one last time before the half and scored again.
Hope and the opportunistic Elon offense drove the ball 72 yards in six plays in less than two minutes. A one yard shovel pass from Pope to Mayers gave the Phoenix a 24-0 lead at the half .
The second half started disastrous for the Aggies. After an A&T fumble on the opening kickoff was recovred by Elon at the Aggies’ 33, Elon struck again.
Hope quickly went to the air with a 33-yard scoring pass to Bo Williamson making the score 31-0 with just over 14 minutes to play in the third. The play and touchdown took only 22 seconds. .
The massacre continued when Aggie quarterback Wayne Campbell was intercepted by Phoenix linebacker Chad Nkang. Nkang, who was named the Southern Conference’s Player Of The Month for October, returned the pick 47 yards for another Elon touchdown making it 38-0 Elon with 11:14 left in the third.
The A&T offense sputtered the entire day. Late in the third quarter, the Aggies had a drive that began on their own 45. They drove the ball into Elon territory and once again looked to have a promising drive, but once again the drive ended in no points.
Campbell was intercepted by cornerback Deronce Daniels in the end zone and after Daniels ran the ball out of the end zone, the Phoenix had the ball at their own 18.
The fourth quarter began with more miscues for the Aggies offense. After stopping Elon on downs, the Aggies drove the ball down the field on another promising drive.
The drive ended when Campbell rolled out to the left side trying to make a play and threw the ball right in the hands of defensive lineman Tim Harper.
The 6-foot-2, 250-pound sophomore, rumbled and stumbled for 28 yards into the end zone putting the game out of reach for at 45-0 with 14:12 remaining.
Elon had nearly 400 yards in total offense while the Aggies had only 135 total yards for the game. Pope was 13 of 18 for 179 yards with two touchdown passes and one running touchdown.
Reggie Hall led the ground attack with 10 carries for 50 yards and Mayers led the way catching the ball with six catches for 77 yards and a touchdown.
Campbell was only nine of 24 for 104 yards and three huge second half interceptions. Michael Ferguson led the Aggies in rushing with 51 yards on 21 carries and Curtis Walls led the team with six catches for 70 yards.
After the game, coach Lee Fobbs talked about mistakes and inconsistency was the demise of the Aggies against Elon. “We made too many mistakes tonight,’’ said Fobbs. “Inconsistency has been a mark of this football team this season. But I must be rubbing off on these young men because they get up and come to work every day with intentions on getting better. Our approach needs to be just that if we want to turn this around.”
With the win, Elon improves their record to 5-5, 2-4 in the Southern Conference while the Aggies drop to 0-10 overall, 0-7 in the MEAC. Next season, North Carolina A&T and Elon will end an eight-year string of playing one another in football during the fall.
The Aggies finish their season next Saturday, November 18th in Charlotte as they face South Carolina State at Memorial stadium in Charlotte in their annual classic battle while Elon finishes their season the same weekend at home versus The Citadel.
Game time is slated for 2pm.