Springfield, Mass. -- September 11, 2010 -- Antoine King rushed for 125 yards, including a 91-yard romp for a score, and the Springfield College football team exploded for 24 points in the third quarter, giving the Pride a 51-0 victory over the Eagles of Husson University in Bangor, Me. this afternoon under sunny skies at the Winkin Sports Complex.
The win pushed Springfield's record to 2-0, while Husson dropped to 0-2.
It was 0-0 at the end of one quarter, a period that Husson had the better of the scoring opportunities. But the Eagles went 0-for-2 in field goal chances, one of 26 yards with 7:25 left, the other of 36 yards with 4:27 left in that quarter, and that was pretty much all she wrote for the home team.
From there, Springfield totally dominated the action the rest of the way. It was SC's first shutout since the last game of the 2006 regular season, when the Pride whitewashed Norwich University, 35-0, in Northfield, Vermont.
The score was 14-0, in favor of Springfield, at the half. Junior quarterback Josh Carter (Marlborough, Mass.) scored on a 1-yard run on the second play of the second quarter. That culminated a 15-play, 80-yard drive. The extra point by sophomore kicker Ricky Peacock (Tucker, Ga.) was good, and with 14:52 left, SC led 7-0.
With 2:16 left, junior fullback Alex Mendez (Cranston, R.I.) crashed in from three yards out, capping a 10-play, 66-yard drive. And SC led, 14-0. Mendez finished with 94 yards and 2 TDs on 20 carries. He also had one reception for another 25 yards.
It wasn't until the third quarter, however, that the Pride really got rolling. Husson ran off 10 plays, but was halted at its own 48-yard line and forced to punt. With a first down at its own 10-yard line, SC lost a yard. But the game changed on the next play. Senior running back Antoine King (Boston, Mass.) found clear daylight and ran 91 yards for an easy, but most exciting, score. Peacock made it 3-for-3 in extra points, and it was 21-0 for the Pride with 10:18 left in the third. It was King who caught an 88-yard pass play from Carter in the final game of last season, a 42-13 SC victory over Plymouth State in the ECAC Division III Northeast Championship Bowl. That 88-yarder was good for a Springfield College record for longest pass play from scrimmage for a touchdown.
After an SC fumble recovery at the Husson 49 on a fourth-down play, the Pride marched 45 yards on eight plays to the Husson four. From there, Peacock booted home a 21-yard field goal, giving SC a 24-0 lead with 5:02 remaining. Peacock is now 2-for-2 this year in field goal attempts.
After a Husson three-and-out, senior tri-captain Joe Myhren (New Hampton, N.Y.) returned a punt 43 yards to the Husson 10-yard line. One play later, junior Erik Chiarella (West Long Branch, N.J.) burst up the middle untouched for another TD. With 3:01 left, Springfield led 31-0.
Following another Eagles' fumble at their own 33-yard line, it took SC just three plays to find the end zone again. Carter completed a 27-yard touchdown to junior running back Mark Safer (St. Johns, Fla.) for the score. With 23 seconds left, SC had registered the 24-point third quarter.
Another three-and-out allowed Springfield to set up shop at its own 38-yard line early in the fourth quarter. Despite a pair of penalties, SC would score following a 6-play, 62-yard drive. With 10:52 left, Mendez barrelled in untouched from 12 yards out. Peacock's kick missed, but SC now led, 44-0.
With the substitutes, and back-up freshman QB Austin Bateman (Gansevoort, N.Y.) now in control, SC had one more scoring opportunity coming. After a 9-play, 66-yard drive engineered by Bateman, in which he personally ran for 48 yards on five carries, Springfield scored its final TD of the day coming with 3:45 left in the contest. The TD came on a 1-yard Bateman keeper.
King ran for 125 yards and one TD on just five carries. That turned out to be a 25.0 yards per carry average. Mendez finished with 94 yards and two TDs on 20 rushes. Safer had 59 yards rushing on four carries. Carter had 58 yards and one TD on 12 carries.
In the air, Carter was 4-for-7 for 73 yards and one TD. Bateman was 1-for-1 for 16 yards. Five different players caught a pass for the Pride, led by Safer's 27-yard TD.
Defensively, senior DT Chris Kulcsar (Haworth, N.J.) topped SC with nine stops, including seven solos. That included three tackles-for-loss and one sack for eight yards. Senior linebacker Ryan Gunningsmith (Trumansburg, N.Y.) followed with seven tackles, including two tackles-for-loss. Freshman linebacker Gianni McLaughlin (Weehauken, N.J.) was next with six tackles (all solos).
All told, Springfield finished with 548 yards of total offense to Husson's 168. In rushing alone, SC outgained the Eagles, 459 to 128. In passing, it came up 89 yards to 40 in the Pride's favor. SC gained 7.9 yards per play to Husson's 2.7. Perhaps due mainly to SC's hurry-up offense, Husson's time of possession bettered the Pride's, 33:38 to 26:22.
Next Saturday (Sept. 18), Springfield travels again, this time to play Wilkes University in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. It will mark the first meeting ever between those two teams. Gametime is at 12 noon.