Towson’s football team, ranked third in one national poll and fourth in another, improved its season record to 4-0 with a 35-17 triumph over the North Carolina Central Eagles Saturday afternoon in Durham, N.C. The Tigers have now won eight straight games stretching back to the 2012 season, when they finished with four consecutive victories.
Up by a slim 14-10 margin at halftime, Towson took the opening kick-off of the second half and drove 67 yards in just over a minute-and-a-half, with junior running back Terrance West capping off the march with a 22-yard touchdown run to give the black-and-gold clad visitors a 21-10 lead. It was West’s second touchdown of the game.
After forcing N.C. Central to punt, Towson rapidly drove the length of the field, covering 86 yards in 12 plays in just over five minutes, with freshman Darius Victor picking up the first touchdown of his Towson career from four yards out to put the Tigers in front, 28-10.
Following back-to-back unsportsmanlike conduct penalties totaling 30 yards called against Towson, N.C. Central pulled to within 28-17 with a 40-yard touchdown pass on the first play of the fourth quarter.
Towson closed out the scoring when Victor found the end zone for the second time, rumbling 10 yards with 1:35 remaining in the game to give the Tigers the 35-17 win.
West finished the afternoon with 139 rushing yards on 31 carries for the Tigers, while Victor accumulated 53 yards on six carries. West and Victor both tallied two touchdowns. Towson quarterback Peter Athens completed 20 of 33 tosses for 252 yards. His favorite target was senior wide receiver Leon Kinnard, who had seven receptions for 102 yards.
“When we get on this bus tonight, we are not 3-and-0, we are not 3-and-1, we are 4-and-0,” said Towson head coach Rob Ambrose immediately following the contest. “It’s been a long time since we’ve been able to say that. We kept them out of the end zone more than they got in, we scored more than they did and we’re going home undefeated.”
Towson had jumped out to a 7-0 lead midway through the second quarter when Athens connected on a nine-yeard pass to tight end James Oboh with 6:39 remaining before halftime. N.C. Central tied the game at 7-7 with 3:45 to go in the second quarter, but the Tigers quickly bounced back to take a 14-7 advantage when West punched the ball into the end zone from one yard out with under a minute left before halftime. The host Eagles cut the Towson lead to 14-10 with a 33-yard field goal that sailed through the uprights with just two seconds showing on the scoreboard clock.
The Tigers are on the road again next Saturday when they travel to Stony Brook, N.Y. to battle the Seawolves at 6 p.m.
Towson will be back in Unitas Stadium one week later, on Oct. 5, when the Tigers host New Hampshire in a Family Day clash at noon.