Matthews’ 4 TDs propels Liberty past Norfolk State 52-17

LYNCHBURG, Va. (AP) — Kentory Matthews rushed for 151 yards and four touchdowns and Frankie Hickson ran for 100 yards and a score to power Liberty to a 52-17 romp over FCS-member Norfolk State on Saturday.

Liberty (6-6), an FBS independent, pulled away from a 3-3 first-quarter tie with 35 unanswered points before halftime.

The Flames took the lead for good on Stephen Calvert’s 18-yard TD toss to Michael Bollinger with 52 seconds left in the first quarter. Liberty tacked on four touchdowns in the first 12 minutes of the second quarter. Hickson scored first on a 5-yard run, Matthews added TD runs of 1 and 3 yards and Rion Davis added a 22-yard interception return score to make it 38-3 with 2:57 left before halftime. Juwan Carter’s 10-yard TD pass to Justin Smith halted the Flames’ scoring streak and pulled the Spartans (4-7) within 38-10 at halftime.

Matthews added a 10-yard TD run in the third quarter and a 13-yard scoring run in the fourth. Norfolk State’s Gerald Hulett sandwiched a 5-yard TD run in between Matthews’ TD run to complete the scoring.

Calvert completed 18 of 31 passes for 158 yards. Calvert’s favorite target was Antonio Gandy-Golden who snagged seven passes for 71 yards.

Carter passed for 197 yards for the Spartans but he was intercepted twice. Isaiah Winstead had nine catches for 82 yards.

The game was originally scheduled for Sept. 15 but was postponed because of Hurricane Florence.