Panthers down Bears in NEFC crossover game
BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – Plymouth State University scored a pair of second quarter touchdowns Saturday afternoon and went on to defeat Bridgewater State University, 17-0, in a New England Football Conference (NEFC) crossover game played at Bridgewater-Raynham High School.
The Panther defense limited Bridgewater State to 152 yards of total offense, handing the Bears their first shutout defeat since an 18-0 loss at home to Worcester State on November 2, 2002. It was PSU’s first whitewash since a 34-0 shutout at UMass Dartmouth last September. Plymouth State improves to 2-1 with the win, while Bridgewater falls to 2-1. The host Bears were playing without preseason All-American running back Justin Fuller (Berkley, Mass.), who was out with an injury.
PSU got on the board with 10:55 remaining in the second quarter on a two-yard touchdown run by sophomore running back Ty Long (Dover, N.H.). The TD run capped off a 14-play, 80-yard drive which last eight minutes and 24 seconds.
The Panthers made it a 14-0 game with just 17 seconds left in the half as they took advantage of a bad snap on a BSU punt attempt. Taking over possession at the Bridgewater 20, Plymouth moved the ball inside the 10 on an 11-yard run by sophomore Michael Malia (Waterford, Conn.). Three plays later senior J.J. Brooks (Seabrook, N.H.) connected with senior John Creamer (Hanover, Mass.) on a seven-yard scoring strike.
Long finished with a game-high 63 yards rushing on 18 carries., while Brooks completed 4-of-9 pass attempts for 49 yards.
Plymouth State added a 32-yard field goal by junior Christian Mulcahy (Norwich, Conn.) midway through the fourth quarter to round out the scoring.
The Bears converted just 2-of-13 third-down attempts and went 0-for-4 on fourth down. Sophomore Nick Pistacchio (Johnston, R.I.) paced Bridgewater offensively with 59 yards on 14 carries. The quarterbacks and receivers however struggled all game long as the Bears completed just 6-of-19 passes for 39 yards which included a number of dropped passes. Bridgewater's defense was solid throughout as Plymouth managed just 165 yards of total offense and finished 4-for-16 on third down conversions.
Senior Brian Castellucci (Derry, N.H.) led the way on defense for Plymouth with nine tackles (seven solo) including one for loss. Senior Dan Kelly (Londonderry, N.H.) added eight solo stops, while senior Kevin Whalen (Wallingford, Conn.) recorded four tackles and a fourth-quarter interception.
Junior defensive end Jacob Curren (North Attleboro, Mass.) paced the BSU defense with seven solo tackles, while junior linebacker Chris Chamberlin (South Easton, Mass.) added six solo stops. Senior defensive end Garrett Dyer (Easthampton, Mass.) registered five unassisted tackles including a sack to go along with a pass breakup.
Divisional play will get underway in the NEFC next weekend as Bridgewater will host Bogan Division foe Framingham State University next Saturday at 1:00 PM, while Plymouth State travels to UMass Dartmouth to take on the Corsairs at noon in a Boyd Division match-up.
(Courtesy of Bridgewater State Sports Information)
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