Cherry capped a 12-play, 59-yard drive by the White squad in the fourth quarter with the successful try and helped the White team to its fourth consecutive Spring Game win.
Purple running back Keithan Valentine rushed for a game-high 104 yards and helped the Purple out-gain the White 128-76 in total offense, but the team stalled twice in the red zone and was stymied on a fourth down try in the final minute. White safety Darhnaz Tigner sacked purple quarterback Trey Scott to preserve the win.
Tim Tibesar’s Purple team looked sharp on its game-opening drive and looked to put the game’s first points on the board as the team moved inside the five, but tight end Jeron Mastrud fumbled on the one yard line while stretching for the end zone. White cornerback Courtney Herndon pried the ball loose and returned the ball 35 yards.
The Purple squad responded with its own defensive stop on the ensuing drive as Gary Chandler picked off White quarterback Josh Freeman’s second pass attempt of the game.
After trading punts and moving up and down midfield, the Purple team got another opportunity to score towards the end of the second quarter when they moved the ball inside the red zone for the second time. The Purple drive was thwarted once again as an errant snap skipped over the head of the placeholder and kicker Brooks Rossman.
The two trips to the red zone in the first half for the Purple ended up being the only trips to the red zone for either team in the entire contest.
At the end of the third quarter Dave Brock’s White team, led by quarterback Tysyn Hartman and running back Frank Delarue, marched down the field and put Cherry into position for his 51-yard try. Cherry, who just missed a 51-yard attempt at the end of the first half, knocked the ball through the uprights and vaulted his team into the lead.
Delarue led the White squad with 45 yards on 12 carries and was second only to Valentine in total yardage. Purple quarterback Carson Coffman led all signal callers with his 6-of-14 effort for 41 yards. Purple’s Matt Wykes caught two passes for 22 yards and joined Valentine as the only receivers in the game to nab two catches.
Tigner capped the game with his sack of Scott in the fourth quarter and was one of three White players to record a sack in the game. Reggie Walker contributed a sack and collected five total tackles, two and a half for loss. Ian Campbell notched the other sack for the White squad and finished with two tackles. White linebacker Olu Hall led all tacklers with five solo stops.
The Purple team collected sacks from Payton Kirk and Eric Childs. Kirk tied teammates Rashad Harrell and John Houlik with a team-leading four tackles.