Panthers pound ‘Sairs

UMD Football

By Michaela Gates, Staff Writer

After a fantastic win over the Westfield State Owls, the men of Corsairs football could not recreate the same magic from last game as they had their toughest loss of the season against the Panthers of Plymouth State.

In what seemed to be an opportunity to start rolling after a big win, it quickly turned into a nightmare early on as the Panthers defense was hungry for turnovers.

While the first two drives of the game resulted in the two teams trading punts, Plymouth State finally caught a break.

The Corsairs got the ball at their own 20 yard-line and on the very first play of the drive senior running back Mike Slaughter fumbled the ball resulting in a Panther recovery on the Corsairs’ 13 yard-line.

As one could imagine, it was a tall order for the Corsairs’ defense as Plymouth simply needed 13 yards for the touchdown. After a four-yard rush was stuffed by the defense, Plymouth managed to rumble forward for the last nine yards needed to secure their first touchdown of the night.

The Corsairs’ defense was holding strong against a powerful Plymouth offense midway through the second quarter as Plymouth was facing a 3rd and 22 from their own ten yard-line.

It seemed as though the Corsairs had the Panthers dead to rights, however the Panthers had other plans as Plymouth gained 90 yards on a single pass play to not only secure a first down, but also a touchdown.

The kick-off was not much better for the Corsairs as the kick rolled all the way back to their own two yard-line. This set the Corsairs up for an extremely difficult drive as the opposite end zone was 98 yards out and the Panthers had been playing exceptional defense all day.

Sadly, the drive only lasted a single play as Stephen Gacioch was sacked for a safety extending Plymouth’s lead to 16-0.

Things only seemed to have gotten worse for the Corsairs as the Panthers continued to drive down the field and score.

By the end of the first half the score stood at a very tough 30-0. The same half also saw two separate Corsair quarterbacks turn the ball over.

Each turnover also resulted in Plymouth State points. The second half was much of the same as Plymouth continued to run up the score on our beloved Corsairs, adding another touchdown in the fourth.

The Corsairs did not go out quietly though as Jace Pena managed to scramble for a 25-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter. The loss marks the Corsairs first MASCAC loss of the year.

While the Corsairs’ overall record is 1-2 and their conference record is at a modest 1-1, there is no reason to panic as the Corsairs can still win out their MASCAC schedule and make a run at the NCAA Division III national tournament.

It is certainly an uphill climb for the Corsairs, however the year is far from over and they still have a great chance at capturing the MASCAC.

The Corsairs go back to work this Saturday versus West Conn.

Photo Courtesy: Corsair Athletics

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