Greene County News
CHICAGO — Central State University fell to 0-2 on the season after Saturday’s 20-13 loss to Clark Atlanta University in the 19th annual Chicago Football Classic held in Soldier Field Saturday, Sept. 10.
CSU had 453 yards of total offense compared to CAU’s 348, but costly turnovers and errors in execution kept the Marauders from scoring throughout the afternoon. The Marauders turned the ball over three times and were 0-for-4 in fourth-down conversion attempts.
The first score of the game came from CAU after the Marauders failed on their first fourth-down attempt of the day. The Panthers capitalized with a 43-yard drive over six plays. After a failed extra point attempt, CAU led 6-0 at the 11:11 mark of the first quarter.
CSU responded late in the first when quarterback Lavon Meeks ran in for the score to cap off a 64-yard drive. The score gave CSU its only lead of the afternoon, 7-6.
The Panthers cashed in again on great field position late in the second quarter. Beginning the drive at the CSU 40, CAU went 40 yards on four plays to take a 13-6 lead.
Down 13-6 with 1:19 remaining, the Marauders struck quick when Meeks hit Marquis Wells on a 74-yard touchdown pass and catch to tie the game, 13-13.
Keeping the Marauder offense in check, Clark Atlanta took the lead for good with a 47-yard touchdown drive, going up 20-13, with 1:56 remaining in the third.
CSU crossed midfield four times in the final 15 minutes, but each drive failed to produce points. With 1:32 remaining, Meeks led the Marauders down to CAU’s 35 with seven seconds left. Meeks threw into heavy coverage and was intercepted by Jacob Mitchell as time expired.
De’Michael Jackson accounted for 154 yards on the ground, averaging 7 yards per carry to lead the CSU rushing attack.
Dropping the first two games of the year, the Marauders will try to get on the right track when they play Benedict College (1-1) in the home opener at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 17.
Fans can listen to live coverage of the game on the Gem City Sports Network, or watch the action on the Central State Athletic Streaming Channel.