Third quarter rally lifts Statesmen to victory - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Third quarter rally lifts Statesmen to victory

October 11, 2007

Valdosta -  Valdosta State has made a habit of overcoming 24 point deficits.

Delta State though turned the tables on the Blazers by scoring four touchdowns in the third quarter and rallied from a 24-0 deficit to beat Valdosta State 35-31 Thursday night.

The Blazers got off to fast start thanks to special teams.

Donnie Powell blocked a punt and recovered it for a touchdown to give VSU a 7-0 lead early in the first quarter.

Punter Steven Wright pinned Delta State inside their territory several times and two of those punts lead to safeties.

Delta State's Ben Stallings was tackled in the endzone and quarterback Brett Hyat was sacked by Jermel Daniels as the Blazers defense added four points in the first quarter.

The VSU offense got their first score on a touchdown pass from Willie Copeland to Zach Parker to give the Blazers a 17-0 lead at halftime.

The game looked like it was over when after the Blazer defense stopped Delta State on fourth down for a third time in the game,  Copeland threw a touchdown pass to Greg Jones to give the Blazers a 24 point lead.

Delta State got on the scoreboard with a touchdown pass from Dedrick Wilson to Jeremy Ricks.

VSU answered on a one yard touchdown run by Michael Terry to put the lead back at 24.

But Jeremy Ricks returned the ensuing kick for a touchdown and David Tahi returned an interception for a touchdown and the Blazer lead was cut to ten.

Another Dedrick Wilson to Jeremy Ricks touchdown pass cut the margin to three all in the third quarter.

The final period began with Brett Hyatt throwing a touchdown pass to Greg Betterson to put the Statesmen in front for the first time in the game.

Willie Copeland led VSU down the field on their final possesion.

Jamarcus Wiggins intercepted Copeland at the goal line to seal the Delta State win.

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Valdosta State (5-1, 3-1) will try to rebound next week at West Alabama.