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Still mourning a tragedy, Bulldogs triumph on the field

By Freddie Allen
On September 27, 2011

As the students, friends, and family of Bowie State University mourned the loss of one of their own, the Bulldogs took the field with heavy hearts on Saturday, September 17 to face Livingstone College. Thursday, September 15, a dorm room altercation ended in the stabbing death of sophomore Dominique Frazier. Following the incident, Alexis Simpson, 19, another Bowie State student was charged with first-degree murder, second-degree murder and assault.

The Bulldogs got off to a slow start in the 1st quarter. Livingstone ate up the clock, winning the TOP battle, but failing to capitalize. Livingstone found the end zone early in the 2nd quarter on a short run by Jamel Moore on a fourth and goal.

On Bowie State's next possession, starting quarterback Clifton Budd through an interception, his first of the game. When Livingstone's drive stalled forcing them to punt, the Bulldogs got on the board when redshirt freshman no. 4 Kendall Jefferson returned a punt 42 yards for the touchdown. BSU missed the PAT and trailed 7-6.

Livingstone wide receiver John Papillion fumbled the kickoff and BSU cornerback no. 34 Dwayne Price swooped in to recover the football. Budd scored on a quarterback keeper to put BSU ahead 13-7 after the PAT.

Late in the 2nd quarter Budd connected with no. 88 Kevin James and BSU stretched the lead to 12 (19-7) going into the locker room at halftime.

Budd threw another interception when the Bowie State's first drive of the second half stalled. The Blue Bears' Justin Johnson ran it back 51 yards to complete the pick-6 and cut into the Bulldogs lead.

Bowie State regained their composure and finished off their next drive with a touchdown on an 8-yard pass to Douglas, McNeil, III to push the lead to 13.

The senior wide receiver had a monster game, hauling in 6 catches for 75 yards and 2 TDs. McNeill credited the Bowie State offensive line and the quarterbacks for making the right reads.

The Bulldogs efficient running game gave the Blue Bears fits all afternoon. Junior running back no. 2 Ramono Flowers rumbled for 82 yards on 18 carries. Senior no. 3 Tariq Jones added 26 yards and a TD midway through the third (34-14).

As seconds ticked off the clock to close the third stanza, Livingstone netted two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties on one play that cost them 30 yards. Starting from Livingstone's 11, BSU quarterback Andre Johnson made short work of Livingstone's secondary and found McNeil in the end zone for Bowie State's final score of the afternoon. The 41-14 victory was an emotional one for the team.

"This win was big for our school, especially with what happened on Thursday," McNeil said. "We had a tragic event so we knew that we had to put the university on our backs and bring some pride back to Bowie State."

Budd agreed.

"That was a tough loss for us and the school is kinda going through mourning right now," Budd said. "We just had to come together as a community. This was a great win for Bowie State. It was a great show to put on for [Dominique] – rest in peace."

On Saturday, September 24, the Bulldogs travel south to Richmond to battle the Panthers of Virginia Union. For more information about the Bowie State football team, visit www.bsubulldogs.com.


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