Kings Point, N.Y. - October 19, 2019 - The Springfield College football team scored a season-high 45 points as it rolled past Merchant Marine, 45-34, in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) on Saturday at Brooks Stadium. In defeat, the Mariners drop to 4-2 (3-1 NEWMAC) on the season, while the Pride won for the third-straight game to improve to 4-3 (3-1 NEWMAC) with the victory.
Springfield's totaled 435 yards of total offense for the game, including 338 on the ground. Tim Callahan (Enfield, Conn.) totaled a career-best 161 yards and three touchdowns as he averaged over 13 yards per carry, while Chad Shade (Pittsfield, Mass.) threw for 97 yards and ran for 77 yards and score. Andrew Smith (Northport, N.Y.) had two catches for 67 yards and Christian Hutra (Holmes, N.Y.) made all six of his extra-point attempts and drilled a career-long 32 yard field goal. Defensively, AJ Smith (Rahway, N.J.) made a team-high 13 tackles and led a unit that held the Mariners to a season-low 176 rushing yards for the game. This game pitted two of the top rushing offenses in Division III football, as Springfield entered the game ranked third with 314.8 yards per game, while the Mariners were first with 361.4 yards per game and finished the game nearly 200 yards below their average.
After the Mariners produced a field goal on their opening posession, Springfield answered right back with a two-yard score by Callahan with 9:39 on the clock. The score was set up by a 55-yard catch and run by Smith. Following Merchant Marine going three-and-out, Springfield found the end zone again, this time on a 25-yard scamper by Nick Rajotte (North Attleboro, Mass.) at the 6:40 mark of the first quarter. The teams traded possessions before the Mariners struck for a 64-yard strike through the air for their first touchdown of the game with 1:47 remaining in the quarter.
Just 10 seconds into the second quarter, Callahan muscled his way through the line before finding daylight down the sideline for a 60-yard score to make it a 21-10 game in favor of the Pride. The Mariners responded with another touchdown, this time on a one-yard plunge at the 11:32 mark, and the hosts were poised to take the lead when they had first-and-goal on the Springfield seven-yard line on their next drive. However, the Pride's defense came up with a huge stop, stopping them on the one-yard line on fourth down to take over on downs. Springfield then marched 99 yards in just nine plays, and Shade scrambled for a 31-yard score with 57 seconds on the clock to make it a 28-17 contest. The hosts nearly scored again in the waning seconds of the half, but Damien Rabis (Southington, Conn.) made a sensational play as he tracked down a receiver and stripped the ball, which Kyle Niehr (Bay Shore, N.Y.) recovered to allow the Pride to go into the half with an 11-point edge.
For the second time in the last three games, Kejuan Farquharson (Hyde Park, Mass.) provided some fireworks on special teams as he returned the opening kickoff of the second half 78 yards for a touchdown as the Pride's lead balloned to 18 points. The hosts responded with a score on an eight-yard touchdown run at the 10:59 mark, but Springfield needed just two plays to answer back as Callahan busted up the middle for a 67-yard touchdown marking his third score of the day.
Merchant Marine closed out the third-quarter scoring with a 24-yard field goal as Springfield's defense again came up with huge stops inside the 10-yard line to keep the hosts out of the end zone. With 8:43 left in regulation, the Mariners made it a one-score game following a eight-yard touchdown reception that capped off a 70-yard, eight-play drive. After the Pride's offense came up empty on their next drive, DJ Brown (Wading River, N.Y.) made a game-sealing interception for the second-straight week as he picked off the Mariners and gave the Pride the ball on the hosts 28-yard line. Holmes then calmly knocked in a career-long 32 yard field goal with 3:49 on the clock to complete the scoring.
Next Saturday, Springfield will host Catholic as part of Homecoming. Kickoff will take place at 1 pm.
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