GREENSBORO, N.C. — Noel Ruiz, who missed twice earlier in the fourth quarter, drilled a 52-yard field goal as time expired, lifting North Carolina A&T to a 24-21 victory in a season opener against Elon Saturday night.
NCA&T and Elon are each ranked in the FCS polls - the Aggies No. 19 and Elon No. 21.
The game was tied 21-21 entering the final quarter and North Carolina A&T drove into field goal range three times. Ruiz missed from 40 and 43 yards, both times wide left. Lined up with one second on the clock, Ruiz boomed a towering kick that soared straight through for the win.
After NC A&T scored 14 unanswered points in the second quarter, Elon took the opening drive after halftime 75 yards to tie on De'Sean McNair's second rushing TD.
The Aggies regained the lead when Kylil Carter lofted a high pass that tight end Quinze Lockhart, a transfer from Navy, snagged at the goal line for a 10-yard score.
Davis Cheek connected with Kortez Weeks on a slant pass as Elon regained a 21-21 tie.