WORCESTER, Mass. (Oct. 21, 2017) – The USMMA football team lost its NEWMAC road contest at WPI, 41-7, on Saturday afternoon at the Engineers' Alumni Stadium. The defeat drops the Mariners' record to 3-4 (2-3 NEWMAC), while WPI improves to 5-2 (3-1 NEWMAC).
Senior quarterback Brice Moore (Pace, Fla.) threw for 150 yards on 8-for-27 passing with one touchdown, a 59-yard strike to sophomore Joe Vitelli (Warrington, Pa.) that cut Merchant Marine's deficit to 17-7 at 11:08 of the second quarter. Vitelli finished the day with four catches for 104 yards, while classmate Luke Jamison (Tequesta, Fla.) hauled in three passes for 35 yards. Moore also led the Mariners on the ground with 64 yards.
Defensively, junior Trever Huss (Orange City, Iowa) and freshman Noah Newburgh (Gilbert, Ariz.) both recorded a team-high eight tackles apiece. Sophomore Reno Dubreuil (Moorpark, Calif.) finished with seven stops and junior Jake Wallace (Pittsburgh, Pa.) had six tackles, including a sack for a loss of seven yards.
Senior punter Erik Swayne (Great Falls, Va.) averaged 41.2 yards on 10 punts with a long of 46 yards and three inside WPI's 20-yard line. Classmate Jake McDonough (Wilmington, N.C.) nailed his only PAT kick and freshman returner Matt Restifo (Hudson, Ohio) brought back eight kickoffs a total of 173 yards (a 22.4 yard average), with a long of 33 yards.
For the Engineers, senior quarterback Blake Rice completed 12-of-23 passes for 233 yards and threw four touchdowns. Junior Erik Fyrer had two catches, one for a TD, with 89 receiving yards, while sophomore Nic Rossi caught three passes for 65 yards and found the end zone twice. Classmate Connor Field led WPI's run game with 20 rushes for 108 yards and fellow sophomore Stephen Lauro brought back a second-quarter kickoff 79 yards for a touchdown.
Sophomore linebacker Nick Ostrowski led all defenders in the game with nine tackles and had one interception in the fourth quarter. Junior Sam Malafronte and senior Dereck Pacheco both had eight tackles and one sack apiece and Pacheco had a game-high four tackles for loss.
The Mariners have a bye week upcoming and will return to action on Saturday, Nov. 4, when they host NEWMAC opponent Catholic at 12-noon at Brooks Stadium. Before kickoff, the USMMA football program will pay tribute to its 19 seniors with a special Senior Day Ceremony. Live stats and a live video feed of the game will be available with links on the USMMA Football Schedule Page.
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