Wake Forest scores 20 unanswered in win over Norfolk State

ACC Football

Wake Forest wide receiver Jackson Hensley runs past Norfolk State defensive back Stuart Anderson Jr. during the second half of a NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 11, 2021, in Winston-Salem, N.C. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) — Sam Hartman passed for 244 yards and a touchdown, Christian Turner rushed for two scores and Wake Forest beat Norfolk State 41-16 on Saturday.

Wake Forest scored 20 straight points, spanning halftime, to take control. On the first play of the second half, Jaquarii Roberson ran past the defense for Hartman’s deep ball and raced for a 64-yard touchdown for a 34-9 lead. It was Roberson’s sixth straight game with a touchdown reception.

Roberson finished with four catches for 97 yards for Wake Forest (2-0). Christian Beal-Smith carried it nine times for 60 yards and a score.

Hartman, Beal-Smith and Turner each rushed for a touchdown in the first half for Wake Forest, and Nick Sciba kicked a 46-yard field goal. It was Turner’s first touchdown with Wake Forest, and Sciba’s 13th straight field goal.

Sciba added a short field goal in the third and Turner scored on a 7-yard run to cap the scoring for Wake Forest.

Juwan Carter was 19-of-31 passing for 195 yards and two touchdowns for Norfolk State (0-2). Rayquan Smith and Anthony Williams each made one catch — both for touchdowns.

Norfolk State scored its second-most points against an FBS team — in its first game against an Atlantic Coast Conference opponent. The Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference program is 0-15 against Bowl Subdivision teams.


Norfolk State: The Spartans, from the Championship Subdivision, didn’t play last season amid the COVID-19 pandemic and have gotten off to a rough start against a pair of FBS opponents, losing 49-10 at Toledo followed by this one. But new coach Dawson Odums cautioned this week that the rust from that lengthy layoff would be more evident against these higher-subdivision opponents than it would against the rest of the schedule.

Wake Forest: The Demon Deacons have started with two lopsided wins against teams that didn’t play last season due to the pandemic, the first being last week’s 42-10 win against Old Dominion. Wake Forest has now won 16 straight games against FCS opponents dating to 2000.


Rondell Bothroyd blocked a Luca Weber punt in the third quarter for Wake’s first since Sept. 13, 2018. Weber had two punts blocked last week against Toledo, and both were returned for touchdowns.


Norfolk State: The Spartans play their home opener next Saturday by hosting Elizabeth City State from the Division II Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association.

Wake Forest: The Demon Deacons begin ACC play with a home game against Florida State next Saturday. The teams were scheduled to meet last December in a game that was canceled due to COVID-19 concerns on the Seminoles’ roster.

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