Game Notes: Maine Maritime Academy at United States Merchant Marine Academy

Game Notes: Maine Maritime Academy at United States Merchant Marine Academy

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Saturday's Game: Maine Maritime Academy (0-2, NEWMAC 0-0) at United States Merchant Marine Academy (2-0, NEWMAC 0-0), 1:00 pm, Brooks Stadium & Captain James Harvey Tomb Field, Kings Point, N.Y. 

Series History: This is only the third meeting between Maine Maritime Academy and the United States Merchant Marine Academy. Maine Maritime took the first-ever meeting in 1964, 19-12 but USMMA defeated Maine Maritime 56-31 last season.

Last Meeting: Maine Maritime Academy football fell to the United States Merchant Marine Academy, 56-31 last season 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 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 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 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. The 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. 

Maine Maritime Academy's Last Game: Maine Maritime Academy football fell to Massachusetts Maritime 22-7, last Saturday afternoon in the 46th Annual Admiral's Cup game at Clean Harbors Stadium. 

The Mariners entered the fourth quarter down by just eight points, but Massachusetts Maritime capitalized on a Maine Maritime safety and orchestrated a late-game touchdown drive to maintain ownership of the Admiral's Cup for one more season.

Maine Maritime used a 48-yard reception by Dominic Casale (Freeport, Maine) from Bailey Sawyer (Westbrook, Maine) to quickly work their way down the field on their opening possession, but a fumble on the next play stalled the Mariners' offense and the two teams exchanged three-and-outs over the next four drives.

The Buccaneers used a 9-play, 63-yard scoring drive to jump out to a 7-0 lead to start the second quarter, following a Matt Long six-yard touchdown carry and a good extra point by George Lampros, and added a 25-yard field goal from Lampros late in the half to take a 10-0 lead into halftime. 

In the third quarter, Connor Finerty returned a Mariner punt 66 yards, setting up the hosts on the Maine Maritime 14 yard line, but the Mariner defense held the Buccaneers to just a field goal, to make it 13-0 with 6:31 to go in the third.

Maine Maritime took just 1:41 to march down the field and score a touchdown, fueled by a 44-yard catch by Joel Bennett (Chelsea, Maine). Sawyer connected with Casale for a 10-yard touchdown grab and Maxwell Horton (Eliot, Maine) added the extra point to make it 13-7.

The Maine Maritime defense forced a Buccaneer three-and-out on the next drive, but the Mariners' momentum fell short on their offensive drive and Mass. Maritime sacked Sawyer in the end zone for the safety to make it 15-7 with 14:04 to play in the game.

Lampros missed a 32-yard field goal on the next Bucs drive, giving the Mariners another chance with nine minutes remaining. Sawyer found Casale for 15 yards, but Connor Hollister picked off Sawyer on the next play and gave the Buccaneers the ball back in Mariner territory.

The Buccaneers put together a 5-play, 41-yard scoring drive, capped off by a 21-yard touchdown reception by Coleson Hammond to build to their lead and the Mariners could not battle back.   

Sawyer finished the afternoon with 188 yards on 12 completions and a touchdown, while Casale accounted for 112 of those yards with seven catches and the touchdown.

Defensively, Derek Breunig (Westbook, Maine) led the Mariners with 14 tackles, including seven solo stops and three tackles for a loss of five yards and Justin Pinard (New Boston, N.H.) tallied 11 tackles, seven solo, one for a loss of one yards and a broken up pass. 

Ty Ebdon conducted the Buccaneer offense with 163 yards on 14 completions and a touchdown, while Paul Sances totaled 96 receiving yards on eight catches and Long led the running attack with 63 yards on 19 carries and a touchdown.

Colin McCabe led Mass. Maritime's defense with eight tackles, including four sacks for a total of 25 yards and Hunter Leveille tallied seven tackles (six solo), one tackle for a loss and an interception. 

United States Merchant Marine Academy's Last Game: The USMMA football team defeated rival SUNY Maritime, 34-21, on the road last Friday night at the Privateers' Reinhart Field. The victory is the senior class' first over Maritime in their four seasons and improves the Mariners' record to 2-0, while the Privateers fall to 2-1. 

Maritime got off to a quick start, as they took the opening kickoff and drove down the field to open the game with a touchdown. The score came on a 4th-and-15 play, where senior quarterback Thomas Wright hit classmate Christian Castle for a 31-yard touchdown catch.

The Mariner defense came up with a couple momentum changing plays later in the quarter, which Merchant Marine needed. Junior Reno Dubreuil forced a fumble that senior Brian Harris jumped on and then later with just 29 seconds left in the quarter, junior Tanner Carter picked off a pass. 

USMMA cashed in early in the second after a 13-play, 50-yard drive ended with a two-yard TD run by senior Joseph Bellomo. The extra point was missed, however, and the Privateers still led, 7-6.

After the Mariners stopped Maritime on its next possession, the offense found a rhythm again and put together an eight-play drive for another touchdown, this on a one-yard rush by junior James Early. Marine decided to go for two to make it a seven-point lead, but fell short, which put the score at 12-7.

The Privateers regained the lead on their next drive, however, after an eight-play, 73-yard drive ended with Wright connecting with senior Brandonn Drumgole on a 14-yard TD.

The third quarter was where USMMA started to pull away, as a one-yard touchdown run by freshman Alec Kiernan at 9:57, followed by a successful two-point conversion rush by junior quarterback Krystian Abbott put the Mariners ahead 20-14. 

The defense came up huge again and forced the Privateers to go three-and-out and just two plays into Merchant Marine's next drive, a play-action pass fooled the Maritime defense and Abbott completed a 43-yard touchdown pass to sophomore Matt Restifo to take a commanding 28-14 lead after another successful two-point conversion, this on a rush by junior Tyler Reihs.

USMMA added another touchdown early in the fourth on a 10-yard rush by Abbott to make it 22 unanswered points, as the Mariners took a 34-14 lead with 10:23 remaining in the game. 

A Privateer touchdown on the next possession made the final few minutes interesting, but the Mariner offense was able to continue pounding the run and take enough time off the clock to secure the victory, and Merchant Marine halted SUNY Maritime's three-game winning streak in the series.

Abbott finished the day going 5-for-6 passing for 93 yards and the one touchdown in the air, while also picking up 43 yards on the ground with the one score. Senior Wiley Martin the Mariners' leading rusher with 54 yards on 15 carries, while Restifo ran the ball five times for 45 yards. Like Abbott, Bellomo ended the night with 43 yards on the ground and the one TD. Restifo had the one TD catch for 43 yards and junior Joe Vitelli caught three passes for 36 receiving yards.

Defensively, Dubriel recorded a team-best 10 tackles, including 3.5 for losses of 15 yards and a sack. Senior Addison Radcliff had seven stops, with 2.5 for losses and one sack, while senior Brooks Cannell and freshman Eric Davidson both had six tackles apiece.

On special teams, freshman Jack Ruark averaged 38.6 yards on five punts with a long of 54 yards, while junior Gavin Gartner averaged 53.0 yards on six kickoffs. Vitelli had a combined 60 yards on returns (17 on three kickoff returns and 43 on punt returns - with a long of 32 yards). 

For the Privateers, Wright finished 26-for-53 passing for 340 yards with three TDs. Castle was his top receiver, hauling in seven catches for 153 yards and two scores, while Drumgole also caught seven passes for 103 yards and found the end zone once. Junior linebacker Liam Bailey led all players in the game with 20 tackles. 

Maine Maritime Academy Mariners: Maine Maritime average 239 yards of offense per game, including 218.5 passing yards. Bailey Sawyer has amassed 372 passing yards on 21 completions and two touchdowns. Dominic Casale leads the receivers with 134 yards on nine catches and a touchdown, while Cole McDaniel (Eliot, Maine) has 115 yards on three catches and a touchdown. Cooper Chiasson (Carthage, Maine) leads the running backs with 84 yards on 26 carries.

Defensively, Derek Breunig leads Maine Maritime with 24 tackles, including 10 solo stops and three tackles for a loss. Maxwell Horton has 19 tackles, 13 solo, and three tackles for a loss of 10 yards.

United States Merchant Marine Academy Mariners: USMMA averages 385.5 yards per game including 339 rushing yards. Krystian Abbott has 93 passing yards on five completions and a touchdown while also leading the team with 135 rushing yards on 31 carries and two touchdowns. 

Defensively, Reno Dubreuil leads the team with 15 tackles, including nine solo stops, one sack and 3.5 tackles for a loss of 15 yards.

High Honors: Following his impressive defensive performance against Massachusetts Maritime last week, senior linebacker Derek Breunig was named to the D3football.com Team of the Week. 

USMMA's Reno Debreuil was named the NEWMAC's Defensive Player of the Week for leading the team last week with 10 tackles against SUNY Maritime.