By Anthony Caruso
The College’s football team suffered a harsh loss on Friday night, with players hanging their heads following the game’s conclusion. Coach Wayne Dickens told his players to erase the game from their memory following a 47-7 loss to Ursinus College.
This 40-point loss was the worst for the team since the 2007 season. In the final game of that season seven years ago, the College lost to national powerhouse Mt. Union in the second round of the Division III playoffs 59-7.
“We’ve got to look at the mistakes because we’ve made fundamental mistakes,” Dickens said. “These are mistakes we didn’t make on the practice field.”
The team looked at film of the game on Saturday in order to review the previous night’s flaws, according to Dickens. He said there were enough corrections for everybody in the room.
“We made errors throughout (and) all over the field,” he said. “Both sides of the ball made mistakes. We even made a few on special teams, and you can’t win football games with this many mistakes.”
Things started to unravel in the second half of the game as the Bears scored 28 unanswered points. They also added a late touchdown in the fourth quarter to put Ursinus up 47-7.
In the third quarter, the College had a fourth down when the coaching staff decided to go for it instead of kicking a long field goal with Ursinus leading 19-7. Sophomore quarterback Michael Marchesano was tackled and lost the ball before Bears linebacker Timothy Rafter scooped up the ball and ran it down the sidelines to the eight-yard line.
The very next play, Bears quarterback Kevin Monahan scored on an eight-yard rushing touchdown. During the next Lions drive, Rafter intercepted Marchesano for a 30-yard touchdown.
“We have to have better ball security,” Dickens said. “If we don’t fumble the ball there, they take over with our defense having more than half the field to defend.”
The Lions had the momentum going into the locker room following a late touchdown. With one minute and 39 seconds left in the first half, Marchesano connected with senior tightend Ryan Baranowsky for an 11-yard touchdown to make it 12-7.
“We either didn’t match their energy, or we made fatal mistakes on plays,” Dickens said. “We got the ball to begin the second half, and we couldn’t get a drive going. When you get momentum, you need to capitalize on it.”
Ursinus scored the first 12 points with a safety and a 19-yard field goal. Monahan hit teammate Darius Jones for a five-yard touchdown to give them a 12-0 lead prior to the Lions score.
Baranowsky was one of the bright spots in the game for the College. He had five receptions for 48 yards and a touchdown, while sophomore receiver Jeff Mattonelli added three receptions for 47 yards.
Scalici had 55 yards on 19 carries. Brad Young contributed 44 yards on eight rushes.
“It was a team effort, and unfortunately we didn’t succeed,” Baranowsky said. “I hope we have a better effort next week against FDU-Florham.”
This Friday night, the team returns to the field, as they travel to FDU-Florham in Madison, N.J. Last year, the Lions lost to both Ursinus and FDU-Florham to begin the season before going on a four-game win streak.
“I have confidence in my teammates,” junior running back Victor Scalici said. “This isn’t the first time we’ve lost a game. We can do this. We did it last year.”