GREENSBORO, N.C. – Averett University's defense forced four second-half turnovers and persevered for a 35-21 road football win at Guilford College Saturday night.
The Cougars (1-2) raced to a 21-0 first-quarter lead and hung on as Guilford (1-2) rallied to within a touchdown early in the fourth quarter. The Quakers made three trips deep into Averett territory on their final three possessions, but the Cougars' defense stood tall and made three fourth-quarter interceptions.
Averett's defense forced five Guilford turnovers but converted them into only one touchdown. That score, a 24-yard scoring run by Ke'Von White, came with 9:41 left in the game and restored Averett's lead to two touchdowns. Guilford had pulled to within 28-21 on a Josh Williams one-yard run early in the fourth quarter.
White finished with a team-high 83 rushing yards and two touchdowns for Averett. Jeff Redd carried 13 times for 57 yards. Philip Kwiatkowski completed eight-of-14 passes for 149 yards and two scores, including a nifty 45-yard strike to Tim Lovick on a double reverse that opened a 21-0 Averett lead late in the first quarter. Roderick Doggett and Robslin Emmanuel both thwarted Quakers' drives with interceptions in the Cougars' end zone. Teammate Isaac Green sealed the win with a theft on the Averett five-yard line with 64 seconds remaining.
The Quakers played minus 11 regular starters due to injury, including sophomore quarterback Zac Halbert, who has an injured foot. Sophomore Sam Griffin made his college debut as the starter, but gave way in the first quarter to Grady Gamble, a senior who saw very limited time under center in Guilford's first two games. Gamble, who did not play for the past two seasons, completed 17 of 48 passes for 280 yards and a touchdown, with four interceptions. Williams rushed for a game-high 85 yards on 23 carries and Mike Williams added 63 rushing yards and a score. Sophomore Lawrence Blake enjoyed a career night with nine catches for 136 yards. Teammate Ben King added seven grabs for 126 yards and a touchdown.
Following a bye week, Guilford opens Old Dominion Athletic Conference play at Washington and Lee University Oct. 1 at 1:30 p.m.