Story and photo courtesy of Marist Athletics
VALPARAISO, Ind. - The Marist football team scored four touchdowns of over 75 yards, including the longest play from scrimmage in program history, as the Red Foxes earned a 44-7 Pioneer Football League victory on Saturday.
The Red Foxes ran for 349 yards and passed for 312 as they rolled up 661 yards of total offense. Senior wide receiver Michael Rios (Miami, Fla.) had 193 receiving yards on four receptions and two touchdowns. Marist also had two 100-yard rushers, as sophomore Max Jacques (Salem, N.H.) had 128 yards on nine carries and a touchdown, and sophomore Emmanuel Onakoya (Waldorf, Md.) ran for 110 yards on seven carries and a score. Junior quarterback Chuckie Looney (Ocala, Fla.) went 8-for-13 for 232 yards and two touchdown passes in the first half. In relief, fifth-year senior Tommy Reilly (Marlton, N.J.) was 6-for-7 for 80 yards and a touchdown.
Marist opened the scoring with 10:20 left in the first quarter, as Looney heaved a pass to Rios near midfield, who caught it and took it the distance for a 97-yard touchdown pass - the longest play from scrimmage in program history.
With Marist leading 9-0 early in the second quarter, Onakoya broke an 85-yard touchdown run up the middle for a touchdown to put the Red Foxes up 16-0. Marist then added two more long touchdowns in the final minutes of the first half. Looney and Rios connected on a 78-yard scoring strike to put Marist up 23-0 with 2:18 left until halftime, and Jacques broke a 96-yard touchdown run with 33 seconds left in the first half as the Red Foxes took a 30-0 lead to the locker room.
Marist then took the second-half kickoff and put together a 10-play, 75-yard drive which resulted in a 10-yard touchdown pass from Reilly to senior tight end Anthony Calcagni (Thornwood, N.Y.) with 8:59 left in the third quarter. Valparaiso answered on its ensuing drive with a 21-yard scoring strike from Eric Hoffman to Tanner Kuramata, but Marist closed out the scoring with a four-yard touchdown run by sophomore back Jared Lynch (East Brunswick, N.J.) with 11:45 to play.
The Red Foxes were led defensively by sophomore safety Zach Adler (Walden, N.Y.), who had a team-high nine tackles and two interceptions. Adler's first interception stopped Valparaiso's opening drive, and led to the Looney-Rios 97-yard touchdown connection.
Valparaiso gained 382 yards of total offense, as Hoffman went 25-for-41 through the air for 304 yards. However, the Red Foxes once again stiffened close to the goal line, as the Crusaders did not score in their three trips inside the Red Zone. For the season, Marist has held the opposition scoreless on 14 of its 30 Red Zone.
Marist improved to 3-5 overall and 2-3 in PFL play; Valparaiso is now 0-8 this season and 0-5 in league play. The Red Foxes will return to action next Saturday, when they host San Diego at Tenney Stadium. Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. Tickets are on sale at GoRedFoxes.com, and for further information, contact the Marist Ticket Office at (845) 575-3553.