Despite a stadium clearing lighting delay, the Florida A&M Rattlers were able to win in a dominate fashion against the Fort Valley State Wildcats.
With five minutes left in the second quarter, the Rattlers were up 13-0 when lighting was spotted near Bragg Stadium. In accordance with NCAA procedure, the stadium was cleared until it was clear the storm was passing.
Such a delay killed the Rattlers momentum near the end of the first half, and shortly after play resumed the Wildcats were able to score a 92-yard touchdown pass.
“We talk about adversity all the time,” coach Simmons said in the post-game press conference. “Ironically, we had a couple of lighting delays this week for practice. We talk about being able to come back out whenever we’re ready, preparing ourselves mentally and physically to come back out and play.
“Aside from that one play, I thought the defense played really good football tonight.”
FAMU also had momentum taken from them by costly penalties. Two potential TD passes were revoked by an offensive pass interference call and a holding call in the first half. FAMU Junior quarterback Ryan Stanley was able to fight through it though, and ended the game with two TD passes and 115 yards.
“No one wants to have a penalty to bring back a touchdown, but I just keep (the teams’) spirit up and let them know it can’t happen again,” Stanley said. “It sucks to have a touchdown called back, but we still have the ball at the end of the day and we got to continue to make plays.
The Rattlers also managed to break a school record with the blowout win. FAMU kicker Yahia Aly broke the school record for field goals made in a game with six. Aly was not even aware he was close to breaking the record until it was announced to the crowd.
“As I was running out to kick off after my fifth field goal, I heard the guy talking about the new record,” Aly said. “As I’m going to kick it off I was getting kind of happy and I looked at the time to see if we had time left just to make sure I had another shot at it.”
Does Aly believe he can make seven in a game?
“If I get the chance yes, and I help the team yes I can 100 percent do it.”
The Rattlers head to Troy, Alabama next week to take on the Trojans and they hope to carry their momentum with them.