BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – The Worcester State University football team posted a 35-21 victory over Bridgewater State University in a Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) contest, defeating the Bears for the first time since 2004.
November 4, 2017
Score: Worcester State 35, Bridgewater State 21
Records: Worcester State (6-3, 5-2 MASCAC) | Bridgewater State (2-7, 2-5 MASCAC)
Bridgewater scored on the opening possession of the game as the Bears marched 79 yards on nine plays as Stefano D'Emilia (Bridgewater, Mass.) connected with Jack Lavanchy (Walpole, Mass.) on a 35-yard touchdown pass. The extra point attempt, however, was blocked.
Worcester answered with a seven-play, 74-yard drive resulting in a nine-yard scoring strike from Noah Brum (Honolulu, Hawaii) to Kharif Pryor (Brooklyn, N.Y.). The point after try by junior kicker Noah Hwang (Brooklyn, Mass.) was good as the visitors jumped ahead, 7-6. Later in the quarter, junior running back Hunter Paupaw (Hudson, Mass.) capped off a nine-play, 68-yard drive with a two-yard TD run to extend the Lancers' lead. The ensuing extra point made it 14-6 with 1:52 left in the first quarter.
A 19-yard touchdown pass from Brum to sophomore tight end Jacob Maher (Marshfield, Mass.) and another Hwang PAT made it a 21-6 game with 2:20 remaining in the second quarter. The scoring play capped off an 11-play, 82-yard drive.
Senior back Malik Garrett (Dorchester, Mass.) busted off a 58-yard touchdown run on fourth-and-two to cut into the Worcester lead with just 51 seconds left until halftime. The Bears went for two and Garrett found D'Emilia in the end zone on the conversion attempt to make it a one-score game, 21-14.
The only score in the third quarter was a nine-yard touchdown pass from D'Emilia to Lavanchy. Senior kicker Russell Bolarinho (Acushnet, Mass.), who did not play in the first half, booted the ensuing extra point to knot the score at 21-21.
The score remained that way until late in the fourth quarter when a 53-yard punt by senior Markiesh Harmon (Leominster, Mass.) pinned the Bears at their own three. Bridgewater was only able to gain one yard on the possession and a short 35-yard punt followed by a 15-yard return by Pryor gave the Lancers outstanding field position at the BSU 24 with just 3:05 left to play.
Back-to-back pass interference penalties, including one in the end zone, set Worcester up at the two-yard line. Paupaw then punched it in from two yards out to give the Lancers the lead. Worcester would add a 42-yard Paupaw touchdown with 1:41 remaining to put the finishing touches on the 35-21 victory.
DOWN FOR A COUNT
- Paupaw rushed for 65 yards and three touchdowns on just seven carries to lead the way for Worcester State.
- Brum completed 42-of-59 pass attempts for a career-high 423 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Brum also threw three interceptions and was sacked five times.
- Pryor hauled in 15 receptions for 107 yards and score, while Maher caught six passes for 128 yards and a touchdown.
- Bridgewater Lavanchy grabbed nine passes for 169 yards and two touchdowns to pace the Bridgewater State offense. Lavanchy set the Bears single-season record for receptions as he now has 73 on the year. He eclipsed Matt Green's previous mark of 69 catches set in 2013.
- Bridgewater quarterback D'Emilia completed 20-of-42 pass attempts for 265 yards and the two touchdowns to Lavanchy.
- The Bears also racked up 163 yards on the ground led by 94 yards and a touchdown by Garrett on just ten carries. Senior running back Alex McLaughlin (Littleton, Mass.) added 81 yards on 22 rushing attempts.
- Senior linebacker Anthony Fogarty III (Albany, N.Y.) led the Bears' defensive effort as he recorded 12 tackles (nine solo), including a pair of sacks, and recorded an interception with a 27-yard return. Senior cornerback Jonathan Marrero (Boston, Mass.) added nine tackles (eight solo) with an interception and 38-yard return to go along with two pass breakups. Sophomore defensive back Juan Gonzalez (Lawrence, Mass.) checked in with five tackles (four solo), including one for loss, an interception and 21-yard return as well as a forced and recovered fumble.
- Worcester State's freshman linebacker Mike Quinn (Sutton, Mass.) paced the Lancers with nine tackles including one for loss and a pass breakup.
- Worcester State defeated Bridgewater State for the first time since 2004. The Bears still lead the all-time series, 21-11.
Both teams wrap up the 2017 season next Saturday at noon. The Bears travel to Massachusetts Maritime Academy to take on the Buccaneers in the 39th Annual Cranberry Bowl sponsored by Ocean Spray, while the Lancers travel to Framingham State University to take on the Rams.
Release Courtesy of Bridgewater State Sports Information