Game Notes: Maine Maritime Academy at WPI

Game Notes: Maine Maritime Academy at WPI


Saturday's Game: Maine Maritime Academy (0-3, 0-1 NEWMAC) at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (2-2, 0-1 NEWMAC), 12:00 pm, Alumni Stadium, Worcester, Mass.

Series History: Saturday's game will be the third meeting between the two teams. WPI holds a 2-0 all-time record over the Mariners, with the two prior meetings coming in 1952 and 1953.

Maine Maritime Academy's Last Game: Maine Maritime Academy enters Saturday's game following a 56-31 loss to USMMA last Saturday at Ritchie Field in the NEWMAC opener for both teams. 

USMMA held Maine Maritime on their opening drive, and responded with an 11-play, 63-yard scoring drive capped off by a 12-yard touchdown run from Joseph Bellomo. Jake McDonough added an extra point to give the visitors a 7-0 lead.

Maine Maritime was forced to punt on their next possession, and USMMA put together a 7-play, 68-yard scoring drive, this time capped off by a four-yard rush from quarterback Brice Moore. McDonough's extra point was good once again to give USMMA a 14-0 lead.

Corey Creeger (Biddeford, Maine) put Maine Maritime on the board to start the second quarter, kicking off the drive with a 40-yard scramble down the field and capping off the drive with a one-yard touchdown run to close the USMMA lead to 14-6. 

USMMA answered with a touchdown on their next drive, to make it 21-6 with 11:26 to play in the half, but Maine Maritime continued to battle. Maine Maritime used a timely roughing the passer penalty following a 43-yard reception from Creeger to Jordan Susi (South Portland, Maine) to set up another Creeger touchdown carry, but the two-point conversion failed and Maine Maritime still faced a two-score deficit (21-12).

Bellomo added his second touchdown of the game late in the half to send USMMA into halftime with a 28-12 advantage.

USMMA added to their lead in the third quarter, when Moore picked up his third touchdown carry of the afternoon and Luke Tiefenthaler grabbed his first touchdown carry of the game to make it 42-12. 

Maine Maritime responded with a pair of big receptions from Creeger to Susi, to set up 16-yard touchdown run by Creeger making it 42-18. USMMA stopped Maine Maritime's momentum with another touchdown run from Moore to make it 49-18. 

Maine Maritime capitalized on a penalty following USMMA's punt, putting together a 5-play, 39-yard scoring drive, capped off by a Creeger touchdown toss to freshman Mason Kaserman (Portland, Maine). The two-point conversion failed and USMMA took a 49-24 lead into the final quarter.

Both teams recorded touchdowns in the fourth quarter. USMMA picked up their touchdown in their first drive of the quarter on a five-yard touchdown carry from Krystian Abbott to make it 56-24.

Maine Maritime's Zackery Brannon (Buxton, Maine) recorded his second touchdown throw of the season when he found John Friend (Islip, N.Y.) in the end zone for a 20-yard reception. Devanie Cunningham's (Asheville, N.C.) extra point was good, making it 56-31.

USMMA ran the final 2:19 off the clock and captured the NEWMAC victory. 

Creeger led Maine Maritime's offense with 152 passing yards on six completions and a touchdown and added 80 yards and three touchdowns on the ground. Susi led Maine Maritime's receivers with 119 yards on four catches and came up big on kickoff returns, tallying 118 yards on five returns.

Defensively, John Bennett (Chelsea, Maine) and Alec Clark (Winslow, Maine) anchored the Maine Maritime defense with 12 tackles each. 

Moore led USMMA with 137 rushing yards and four touchdowns, while Tiefenthaler added 93 yards and a touchdown. Anthony Sandoval led the King's Point defense with six tackles, including four solo stops. 

Maine Maritime combined for 323 yards of total offense, led by 172 passing yards, while USMMA tallied 590 total yards of offense, led by 577 yards on the ground.

WPI's Last Game: The Engineers enter Saturday's game coming off of a 42-10 loss to Springfield College in NEWMAC action last Saturday.

Sean McAllen carried the ball 20 times for 83 yards, while Blake Rice was 19-for-38 for 198 yards, a touchdown, and three interceptions. Alex Domond hauled in a game-best four receptions while Corey Coogan, Erik Fyrer and Lain Zembek all had three catches. 

WPI's Nick Ostrowski made a game-high 10 stops and Sam Casey made eight tackles, had an interception and fumble recovery. Blayne Merchant, Collin Saunders, Francis Lubega all amassed seven tackles for the Crimson and Gray while Dereck Pacheco recorded a pair of tackles-for-loss.

WPI scored the game's first points when Spencer Herrington cashed in on a field goal from 20 yards at the 8:04 mark, capping off an 11-play, 61-yard drive that lasted just over five minutes. Springfield responded back with their first touchdown when Hunter Belzo broke free down the right side line for a 26-yard score with 1:01 left in the quarter.   

Springfield put together a dominating drive to close out the second quarter, marking 90 yards over 17 plays in a 5:54 span. Jake Eglintine converted a key 3rd and 18 as he busted up the middle for 26 yards, and five plays later, Wilcox plunged in from two yards out to give the hosts a 14-3 cushion. 

The Pride blew open the game with a 21-point third quarter, a stanza in which it rushed for 245 yards on 16 carries. After forcing a three-and-out, Springfield needed just three plays to find paydirt as Jordan Wilcox broke free for a 46-yard jaunt up the gut. After Scott picked off the Engineers on the WPI 38-yard line, Springfield pushed its lead to 28-3 at the 11:29 mark, just 1:34 after Wilcox's touchdown.  

WPI scored their lone touchdown of the game with 7:28 left in the third when Rice hooked up with Brendan Chipman on a 28-yard fade route down the left sideline, only to have Springfield answer back 43 seconds later when Cory DeSimone took the pitch past the goaline from eight yards.  Springfield scored their final touchdown the game with 6:44 left in regulation when Tyler Hyde got loose for a 75-yard score.

The Mariners: Quarterback Corey Creeger leads the Maine Maritime offense with 375 passing yards and 3055 rushing yards. The senior quarterback has scored six rushing touchdowns and has two touchdown tosses. James Ferrar (Cumberland, Maine) has 173 yards on 38 carriers. Jordan Susi has 10 receptions for 245 yards and a touchdown and has returned seven kickoffs for 184 yards.

John Bennett, Derek Breunig (Westbrooke, Maine) and Derek Clark all have 20 tackles for the Mariners, while Bennett has returned an interception for 45 yards.

As a team, Maine Maritime averages 359.3 yards of offense per game, including 207 rushing yards per game and 23 points per game.

The Engineers: Blake Rice has 808 passing yards on 70 completions, and five touchdowns. Sean McAllen leads the WPI running backs with 461 yards on 71 carries and six touchdowns and Corey Coogan leads the receivers with 151 yards on 11 receptions and two touchdowns.

Defensively, Nick Ostrowski leads the Engineers with 27 tackles, including 20 solo stops, three tackles for a loss, two sacks and a forced fumble. 

As a team, WPI averages 382 yards of offense per game, including 202 passing yards per game and 27.5 points per game. 

By Air or Land: Corey Creeger rushed for 80 yards last week, surpassing 1,000 career-rushing yards. Creeger now has 1,291 passing yards and 1,029 rushing yards, becoming only the fourth player in Maine Maritime football history to record surpass that milestone in both rushing yards and passing yards.

Campbell Trophy: Maine Maritime Academy senior linebacker Cody O'Brien (Wells, Maine) has been named one of 181 semifinalists for the 2017 William V. Campbell Trophy®, presented by Fidelity Investments®. The award recognizes an individual as the absolute best football scholar-athlete in the nation.

O'Brien, a Marine Engineering Technology major from Wells, Maine, was named the lone team captain for the Mariners this season and was selected to the 2015 and 2016 New England Football Conference All-Academic teams. O'Brien is a member of the Regimental Training Staff, Bravo Company Commander and is the President of the Knights of Columbus Service Club. 

On the field the four-year member of the Maine Maritime football team, has 87 career tackles, including 41 solo tackles and 5.5 tackles for a loss of seven yards. O'Brien also holds the Maine Maritime single-game record for longest fumble return (75 yards). Click HERE to view the complete release.