The University of Arkansas At Pine Bluff football team used a steady, methodical approach in defeating Mississippi Valley State 38-6 Saturday at Simmons Bank Field.
UAPB (5-2 overall, 2-1 SWAC) matched its best start in seven years headed into the bye week by scoring in every quarter and using a great balance of rushing, passing, and defense in compiling a nearly 200 yards difference in total yards (489 – 299).
RB Taeyler Porter set the tone, rushing 20 times for 95 yards, 56 of them in the first quarter, and two touchdowns.
His early rushing opened the way for the passing game, as Shannon Patrick had season highs in completions (20), attempts (27), and passing yards (334) while tying a season high with three touchdown passes and no interceptions.
Josh Wilkes caught a season-high seven passes for 138 yards and one touchdown. DeJuan Miller (5-90-1) and Tyrin Ralph (2-31-1) also caught scoring passes from Patrick.
The defense made three interceptions, recorded three sacks, and allowed no points and only 139 yards total offense over the final three quarters. Martevious Washington, Shawn Steele, and Jalen Steward each had an interception.
Trailing 6-0 late in the first quarter, the Golden Lions drove 75 yards in eight plays, as Porter’s four-yard scoring run put UAPB ahead 7-6 with just over three minutes to play in the first quarter.
Early in the second quarter, UAPB drove 62 yards in seven plays, capped by Miller’s 32-yard TD reception from Patrick to extend the lead to 14-6 with 10:38 to play until halftime.
UAPB scored again just before halftime, driving 66 yards in five plays in only 51 seconds. Ralph’s diving 17-yard touchdown catch in the near corner of the end zone gave the Golden Lions a 21-6 lead at halftime.
Late in the third quarter, UAPB drove 61 yards in seven plays, as Porter’s one-yard run made the score 28-6 with just under a minute to play in the period.
Following Steward’s interception, it only took two plays for the Golden Lions to cash it in. On the first play of the fourth quarter, Wilkes caught a screen pass, ran through a tackle and found the opening through the defense on a 56-yard touchdown play and a 35-6 lead.
Zack Piwniczka’a 30-yard field goal with 5:33 remaining completed the scoring for UAPB, which has an open date next week before returning to SWAC play hosting Grambling on Oct. 26 at 3 p.m. at Simmons Bank Field.