SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (Nov. 8, 2014) – The United States Merchant Marine Academy football team lost its road finale on Saturday to the Union College Dutchmen by the final score of 59-32. The Mariners rebounded after a slow first half and scored 25 of their 32 points in the second half, but were unable to get any closer than 16 points of Union down the stretch.
The Dutchmen recorded an impressive 606 total yards of offense, while USMMA put up 412 yards, including 336 on the ground. Junior quarterback Matthew McDaniels (Malverne, N.Y.) led all players in the game with 162 rushing yards on 19 attempts as he found the end zone twice on the ground and also caught a 61-yard TD pass from freshman running back Robert Moore (Pace, Fla.) in the third quarter.
Union charged out to a 21-0 lead by the early stages of the second quarter on a one-yard run by senior Darnel Thomas on the game's opening drive and two passing TDs by freshman gunslinger Dante Cioffi to senior Kyle Reynolds. The Mariners would respond with their first score of the day on a 54-yard run by McDaniels in the middle of the second quarter. However, the Dutchmen would tack on two more touchdowns and take a 35-17 lead in the locker room at halftime.
Merchant Marine scored on the first drive of the second half on a seven-yard run by junior Mario Colangelo (Staten Island, N.Y.). After a 30-yard field goal by Union junior David Pope made the score 38-14, Moore connected with McDaniels for the 61-yard score that brought Kings Point to within 16. The Dutchmen responded shortly after when Reynolds caught a 26-yard TD from Cioffi. McDaniels scored the last touchdown of the third quarter on a one-yard run that made the score 45-29.
Reynolds caught his fourth touchdown of the day to kick off the scoring in the fourth quarter. USMMA responded with a 34-yard field goal by freshman Erik Swayne (Great Falls, Va.), but a 32-yard run for a TD by Dutchmen freshman Connor Kinzelmann closed out the scoring on the day.
Colangelo ended the day with 61 rushing yards and one score, while six other Mariners contributed to the ground game. For Union, Thomas was the leading rusher with 142 yards and one score, Cioffi was 21-of-33 in the air with six TDs and his primary target with Reynolds, who hauled in nine catches for 193 yards and four touchdowns.
Defensively, sophomore Patrick Keyes (Parsippany, N.J.) led the way for the Mariners with 14 tackles (five solo and nine assisted, including one for a loss of four yards), as he matched the game-high with Union's Jake Larovera.
The Mariners (2-7, 0-6 Liberty) return to action next Saturday, Nov. 15, in the season finale at home against St. Lawrence (7-2, 5-1 Liberty). Kickoff is scheduled for noon at Brooks Stadium.