Golden Bears stun Seahawks 41-22

Golden Bears stun Seahawks 41-22

Western New England 41, Salve Regina 22
Middletown, Rhode Island – Gaudet Field
Saturday, November 5, 2016

The Western New England University football teams repeats as New England Football Conference (NEFC) Champions with a 41-22 victory over Salve Regina at Gaudet Field Saturday afternoon.

Series and Streaks
This was the 24th meeting between the teams. The Seahawks still own a 15-9 advantage in the all-times series, but have now lost three in a row to the Golden Bears.

Scoring Drives
2nd  13:19 WNE - Nick Connell 7 yd run (Kevin Patterson kick), 8-63 2:28 7 - 0
10:19 WNE - Mark Dietrich 21 yd pass from Anthony Service (Kevin Patterson kick), 6-66 1:47 14 - 0
06:08 WNE - Nick Connell 19 yd run (Kevin Patterson kick), 2-32 0:22 21 - 0
04:15 SRU - Tommy Seaver 36 yd pass from Brandan Basil (Andrew Verre kick failed), 5-66 1:45 21 - 6
3rd  10:47 SRU - Chris Rosati 15 yd blocked punt return (Jack Guelfi kick) 21 - 13
08:01 SRU - Connor Sullivan 39 yd pass from Brandan Basil (Brandan Basil pass failed), 4-55 1:39 21 - 19
03:50 WNE - Dante Aiken 30 yd run (Kevin Patterson kick failed), 9-75 4:11 27 - 19
4th  12:40 SRU - Andrew Verre 28 yd field goal, 6-33 2:35 27 - 22
10:25 WNE - Nick Connell 5 yd run (Kevin Patterson kick), 5-51 2:12 34 - 22
01:52 WNE - Nick Connell 25 yd run (Kevin Patterson kick), 4-34 1:44 41 - 22
Key Stat of the Game
The Seahawks were held to just 88 yards on the ground after averaging 292.9 yards per game rushing coming into today's contest.

Turning Point
In a repeat of last season's championship game, the Golden Bears raced out to a 21-0 lead only for the Seahawks to fight their way back. Chris Rosati (Shoreham, N.Y.) returned a blocked punt for a touchdown then Connor Sullivan (Lowell, Mass.) scored on a 39 yard catch and run to make the score 21-19 with 8:01 left in the third quarter. Despite a failed two-point conversion the Seahawks still had plenty of momentum in the game. The Golden Bears responded with a nine-play, 75 yard scoring drive, quieting the crowd with two key third down conversions. Dante Aiken (Brooklyn, N.Y.) rushed 30 yards for the touchdown to make it 27-19 and although the Seahawks had more chances remaining in the game, that drive was pivotal in giving the Golden Bears back control and momentum when it seemed the Seahawks were starting to roll.

Quick Hits

  • The Golden Bears outgained the Seahawks 429-239. Western New England converted on 9-of-21 third down opportunities, while limiting Salve Regina to 4-of-17 on third down.
  • The Seahawks drew within five points when Andrew Verre (Wethersfield, Conn.) kicked a 28 yard field goal to make it 27-22 with 12:40 left in the fourth quarter, but the Golden Bears scored 14 straight points to seal the same, both courtesy of senior running back Nick Connell (East Marion, N.Y.) who had four touchdowns on the day.
  • Brandan Basil (Northford, Conn.) completed 11-of-42 passes for 151 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions.
  • Anthony Service (Lake Ronkonkoma, N.Y.) was 11-of-28 for 143 yards and one touchdown for the Golden Bears.

Next Up

Salve Regina (7-1, 5-1 NEFC) – Saturday, November 12 at Maine Maritime, 12 p.m.
Western New Eng. (9-0, 6-0 NEFC) – Saturday, November 12 vs Coast Guard, 1 p.m.