Story and photo courtesy of Monmouth Athletics
WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J. – Fifth-year senior quarterback Kyle Frazier (Gaithersburg, Md./Saint John’s College H.S.) completed 32-of-43 passes for 313 yards and two touchdowns as the Monmouth University football team defeated Sacred Heart, 27-14, Saturday afternoon on Kessler Field. Lamar Davenport (Asbury Park, N.J./Asbury Park) hauled in nine receptions for 105 yards, while Tristan Roberts (Ansonia, Conn./Ansonia) has six catches for 71 yards and two touchdowns. With the win, the Hawks improve to 3-1 (2-0 NEC), while the Pioneers fall to 0-3 (0-1 NEC) with the loss.
“We were happy to get the second win in Northeast Conference play,” said Callahan. “That puts us 2-0 and in control of our own fate in the conference race. “We knew going into today’s game we were going to play a team that was hungry for a win and a team with a fair amount of talent. They are a team that brings a lot of different blitzes from a lot of looks, which caused us a little bit of issue in the running attack. I thought we did a really good job of throwing the ball, spreading the ball around to different receivers. Kyle was accurate, completing 32-of-43 passes on the day. On the defensive side, we weren’t quite aggressive in attacking as we were in the first three games. I thought we got that straightened out in halfttime. You saw in the third and most of the fourth quarter we played a much better brand of football.”
Tyler George (Berkeley Heights, N.J./Governor Livingston) added six catches for 36 yards, while Mike McLafferty (Morgan, N.J./War Memorial) had four catches for 22 yards. Justin Pandorf (Lanoka Harbor, N.J./Lacey) led the Hawks with 32 rushing yards on a fake punt. Julian Hayes (Middletown, Conn./Xavier [The Hun School]) chipped in 24 yards on the ground for the Blue and White, while Eric Sumlin (Dover, Del./Dover) also added a nine-yard touchdown run on a reverse.
The Hawks’ defense intercepted Sacred Heart quarterback Tim Little three times, while also sacking him on three occasions. Pat Gray (Westfield, N.J./Westfield [Hargrave M.A.]) made two interceptions in addition to a team-high eight tackles, while Bill Lauch (Wall, N.J./Wall [Erie C.C.]) had the third. Eric Macik (Landisville, Pa./Hempfield) added two sacks for the Hawks, while Dan Sullivan (Manasquan, N.J./Manasquan) added a sack to his six tackles.
Eric Spillane (Howell, N.J./Colts Neck) kicked two field goals to tie Fred Weingart’s program record of 31 career field goals made.
After punts on each team’s first drive stalled, the Hawks turned a Lauch interception into a touchdown. The seven-play, 55-yard drive was capped by Frazier’s 15-yard touchdown connection over the middle to Roberts, putting MU on top, 7-0, at the 7:41 mark of the first quarter. The Hawks would extend the lead to 14-0 on Sumlin’s nine-yard run off a reverse at the 14:14 mark of the second quarter. The run capped an 11-play, 87-yard drive, covering 4:51. Davenport’s 44-yard reception enabled the drive.
The Pioneers got on the board with 4:25 left in the second quarter when Little connected with Robert Dim for a 33-yard touchdown completion. Sacred Heart then tied the game as time expired in the first half. Gray intercepted Little’s pass as the final seconds ticked off, but Gray was stripped in the end zone and Tyler Dube recovered the fumble for the touchdown.
Out of the break, the Hawks retook the lead when Spillane capped an 11-play, 47-yard drive with a 37-yard field goal to put Monmouth on top, 17-14, with 10:57 left in the third quarter. Later in the third quarter, Monmouth extended the lead to 24-14 on Frazier’s second touchdown pass to Roberts, this time for four yards inside the pylon. The connection capped an eight-play drive covering 51 yards.
The Pioneers looked to have stopped the Hawks on their next drive, but Pandorf rumbled 32 yards on a fake punt, setting up a 32-yard Spillane field goal. The field goal tied Spillane with Fred Weingart for most field goals made in program history.
Little finished with 199 yards passing on 18-of-33 passing with three interceptions and one touchdown. Dim has 108 yards with a long of 40 and the lone SHU offensive score. The Pioneers had 42 yards rushing in the contest, with Moore and Gregory Ibe combining for 30 total yards. Justin Sexton, Dennis Regan and Matt Colucci led the Pioneer defense with eight tackles apiece.
The Hawks return to action next Saturday, when they travel to Northeast Conference foe Albany. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. on University Field.