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Sports

Football Defeats Hampton 30-23 in Overtime

Football 9.27.17Football defeated Hampton 30-23 after freshman running back Eric Zokouri scored the game winning score on the first play of overtime on Saturday afternoon.

“It was a very good but also very clutch performance on his part,” Head Coach Kevin Callahan said about Zokuri’s game winning touchdown. “Unfortunately we had a few backs banged up and he answered the call, he was the next man up and did a great job.”

MU started slow against Hampton, allowing back-to-back touchdowns on the first two Hampton drives. The blue and white countered with a two yard rushing touchdown by junior running back Devell Jones, his team-leading sixth score of the season. That was set up by a fumble recovery by junior linebacker Diego Zubieta on Hampton’s 14 yardline.

“I have to credit Hampton, I thought they came up with a good gameplan on both sides of the ball, they did some things on offense that had us on our heels early,” Callahan said.

After a Hampton field goal to make the score 16-7, the Hawks would bring the lead within two after a nine yard touchdown pass from sophomore quarterback Kenji Bahar to junior tight end Jake Powell with less than a minute left in the half.

MU would tie the game at 16 all in the third quarter, thanks to a failed Hampton punt attempt that sailed over the punter’s head and end up in their own endzone. The play would result in a 21-yard safety.

After the safety, Zokouri would score his first of two touchdowns of the game, scoring on a one yard touchdown run late in the third quarter. That was the freshman’s first collegiate touchdown.

With Hampton looking to drive and score the tying touchdown, senior defensive back Kamau Dumas had other ideas. He would get his second interception of the game and third of his career.

The blue and white would take the one score lead late into the fourth quarter. With only 23 seconds left in the game, Hampton would tie the game with a 34-yard touchdown pass to tie the game at 23 all and the result would lead to overtime.

After Hampton won the coin toss and elected to defend first, on the first play of overtime, Zokouri would reach the promise land on a 25-yard touchdown run to make it 30-23. The Hawk’s defense would strong-arm Hampton, not allowing a yard on four plays to secure the overtime victory for MU.

“Overtime it was 0-0, after the offense scored on the first play, we took it upon ourselves to step up and keep them out of the endzone,” Dumas said. “We came out with the win- that’s the most important part but there is a lot of stuff we need to clean up.”

“We didn’t make it easy but I was very happy with the way our players hung in there,” Callahan said. “They were a team that we knew wasn’t going to go away and a team that we knew we had to put away. Fortunately we were able to do that at the end of the day.”

For the game, Zokouri finished as the team-leading rusher with 77 yards. Senior safety Mike Basile finished with eight tackles. Bahar contributed with 111 passing yards.

The Hawks (3-1) will look to build on the overtime win as they continue their long road stretch against Bucknell. Kickoff will be on Saturday, Sept. 30 at 6:00 p.m.

PHOTO COURTESY of Monmouth Athletics

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