Football edges Morrisville State 28-27 victory

0
105

 

The football team escaped with a 28-27 win last Saturday when Morrisville State kicker Kinsey Williams missed a potential game tying extra-point with under four minutes in the fourth quarter. Union had jumped ahead earlier in the quarter on a 95-yard kickoff return for a touchdown by Griffin Beal ’20. With the win, the Dutchmen extended their winning streak to four, with the last three all coming on the road. Although only halfway through the season, Union’s four wins is the program’s most since 2012. Jumping out to an early lead has become a theme for the Dutchmen this season and Saturday was no different, as Union led 14-0 after the first quarter. Derek Khnaizir ‘19 punched the ball in with a five-yard touchdown run with 6:54 left in the opening quarter before quarterback Nick Cascione ’19 connected with Beal for a 31-yard touchdown on the Dutchmen’s next drive. Morrisville State clawed back into the game, however, and the two teams went into halftime tied at 14. Jason Nelson ’18 had an interception deep in Union territory late in the 2nd quarter to stop another threatening drive from Morrisville State. In the third quarter, Travis Demby ’21 caught his first career touchdown pass, though Morrisville State marched down the field early in the fourth to tie the game at 21. On the ensuing kickoff return, Beal raced 95 yards for the go-ahead touchdown, giving Union a lead with 11:28 left to play. Union’s defense still had work to do after Williams’ missed extra point, but the Dutchmen shut down Morrisville’s final drive in the final minutes to preserve the win. The first of Union’s three straight road victories came against Gallaudet University on September 16th. Two touchdown passes by Cascione, one to Packy Brown ’19, and the other to Alex Kaplanovich ’18, carried the Dutchmen to a 17-0 lead after the first quarter. Gallaudet chipped away in the second, cutting the deficit down to three heading into the half before scoring again late in the third quarter. Now trailing, Union’s offense responded on their following drive, culminating in another touchdown catch by Brown. Next, it was the defense’s turn to come up big. With Galluadet at Union’s 31-yard line, Phil Panici ’19 forced a fumble by running back DeMichael Shelbon. Nelson scooped up the loose ball and returned it 28 yards into Galluadet territory. On the next play, Khnaizir broke free for a 35-yard run, setting up Cascione’s fourth touchdown pass of the day, this one to Ryan Hanney ’18, and giving Union a 31-21 lead, which held for the rest of the game. The following weekend, the Dutchmen trailed Curry College 7-3 after three quarters, but an 18-yard touchdown catch by Beal gave Union the lead seconds into the fourth. After Curry failed to move the ball on the ensuing drive, the Dutchmen ripped off a 12-play, 67-yard drive that ended with an 9-yard touchdown run by Brett Waller ’20. Curry responded with a late touchdown of their own, but Union ran the clock out to earn a 17-14 victory. Cascione completed 16 of 20 attempts and 180 yards in the win, while Waller ran for 100 yards, a career high. Defensively, Tucker Newman ’19, Jake Lombardo ’18, Bobby Law ’19, and Evan Gilland ’20 all had seven total tackels. Gilland also had an interception. Union’s winning streak will face a tough test this Saturday, as the Dutchmen take on St. Lawrence, the back to back Liberty League co-champions, at Frank Bailey Field at 1 pm.

NO COMMENTS

Leave a Reply