ELON, N.C. — Scott Riddle(Eastern Randolph High School) passed for 416 yards and three touchdowns as the Elon Phoenix offense racked up 495 total yards on its way to a thrilling 24-19 Southern Conference football victory over the visiting Samford Bulldogs on Family Weekend at Rhodes Stadium.
“Today was one of those days that ages you quickly,” said head coach Pete Lembo. “There were a lot of highs and lows in this game, but Iâ€™m proud of our kids and how they persevered. There were a lot of momentum swings, especially in the second half. Samford is a good team, and a persistent team and a well-coached team and it was going to come down to who could find a way at the end. I thought we came out very strong and it was probably our best start of the year.”
After forcing a Samford punt to start the game, No. 21 Elon (2-3, 1-1 SoCon) marched 80 yards in six plays to take an early 7-0 advantage. The drive began with two A.J. Harris runs sandwiched around a Bulldog offside penalty to set up a second-and-two. The Phoenix converted the first down when Riddle found Aaron Mellette for an eight-yard gain. After Jeremy Peterson picked up eight more yards on a catch, Riddle hit Mellette again for another nine yards to the Samford 47. A pass to Harris was followed by two rushes by the back to move the ball down to the Bulldogsâ€™ 36 before Riddle thew to Kierre Brown in the middle of the field who raced to the pylon for the score with 9:22 left in the first quarter.