Mississippi Valley State battles past Alabama State 44-31


ITTA BENA, Miss. (AP) — Jakobe Thomas rushed for 88 yards and three touchdowns, Jalani Eastman passed for 315 yards with two big-play TDs and Mississippi Valley State erupted for nearly 500 yards of total offense in a 44-31 win over Alabama State on Saturday.

Coming out of a 17-17 halftime tie, Alabama State (3-6, 2-5 Southwest Athletic Conference) grabbed a 24-17 lead when Ezra Gray hauled in a 20-yard pass from Ryan Nettles on the opening drive.

The Delta Devils answered with an 83-yard scoring pass from Eastman to Jarius Clayton and followed that with a 93-yard scoring toss to Jacory Rankin for a 31-24 lead after three quarters.

The Hornets, who have lost four straight, tied the game at 31-31 on a Nettles pass to Wallace Corker but MVSU’s Thomas scored twice — on runs of 30 and 4 yards — in the last 3:48 to seal the win.

Mississippi Valley State (3-7, 2-5) broke a four game skid and an 11-game losing streak to Alabama State dating back to 2008.

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