MORRISVILLE, N.Y. – Morrisville State football picked up their fourth straight Empire 8 victory Saturday afternoon in windy and wet conditions as they topped visiting Hartwick College by a 44-20 final score on Drake Field in Morrisville.
After forcing the Hawks to two quick drives, Morrisville State took advantage of good field position on their second drive attempt of the contest, and in two plays, completed the 31-yard drive as freshman Toure Hall (Stratford, Conn.) scampered around the left corner 29 yards into the endzone for the early 7-0 host lead. Zan Stewart (Norwich, N.Y.) completed the drive with the point after.
On the ensuing Hartwick drive, Morrisville State again began their drive deep in Hawk territory, starting on the 25-yard line after the visitors were whistled for a facemask penalty on the kick return. The Mustangs utilized the power behind senior Nick Edmond (Blythe, Calif.) to each the end zone in just three plays, as the running back completed the drive with a 19-yard run up the center untouched.
Hartwick put together a drive attempt late in the quarter that carried over to the second, but fell short as they turned the ball over on downs after Joe Miller-LaBar (Groton, N.Y.) forced the incomplete pass.
For a third straight possession, Morrisville State put numbers on the board, this time a 12-play, 72-yard drive that was completed by a three-yard pass from senior quarterback Brandon Gwinner (Schenectady, N.Y.) to fellow senior Petrit Boga (Bronx, N.Y.) in the right corner.
Hartwick made a final attempt in the first half to put one up on the board, but the Mustangs secondary made another big stop with Deondrade Wells (Goshen, N.Y.) pulling in the long ball thrown by Hawks quarterback Grant Herman, on the Mustangs eight yard line.
Morrisville State added to their lead on their first drive of the third quarter, as Stewart completed a 27 yard field goal for the 24-0 host advantage.
The Hawks were able to get past the Mustang defense midway through the third, completing a 72-yard drive with a 17-yard scoring pass from Harman to Princeton Gahagan for the score, cutting the lead to two possessions.
It appeared that momentum shifted in favor of the Hawks, who forced Morrisville State to punt on their following possession, but a fumble by Josh Klosner in Hartwick territory and a recovery by LaBar-Miller, regained the ball for the hosts, on the 25-yard line.
Within a matter of plays, Morrisville State countered the Hawks score with one of their own as Gwinner connected with Toure in the back of the end zone, who was able to get a quick two feet down before falling out of bounds.
The hosts entered the fourth quarter with the 31-6 lead and possession of the ball deep in Hartwick territory after a 29-yard strike to Jermaine Cooper (New York, N.Y.) to the Hawk four, before Edmond pounded it in for a second time after getting a big block from left guard Tyler Elmore (Huntington Station, N.Y.).
Hartwick added to their totals midway through the quarter with a 70-yard scoring drive as Harman completed flicked the ball to Corey Sachs to cut the Mustang lead to 38-13.
Harman again led the Hawks past the Mustang defense on their ensuing possession down field 82-yards in five plays, before completing the drive with a 13-yard strike to Mucci in the left corner.
Kinsey Williams (Holland Patent, N.Y.) though, would get that score back for the hosts, as he scrambled 46 yards after getting two big blocks, including one from Johnny Vigliotti (Syracuse, N.Y.), for the rushing touchdown score.
Hartwick put together one last effort, but ran out of time as Morrisville State posted the 44-20 Empire 8 win.
- Final Score: Morrisville State 44, Hartwick 20 (Halftime: Morrisville 21-0)
- Location: Drake Field, Morrisville, N.Y.
- Records: Morrisville State (6-3, 4-2 E8), Hartwick (2-7, 0-6 E8)
- Weather: 35, rain, wind W16 mph
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- Morrisville State dominated the running game, racing past the Hawks 255 net yards to 63, but Hartwick was able to soar through the air as they collected a total 384 yards to the Mustangs 188 on the day.
- Nick Edmond (Blythe, Calif.) led all ball carriers with 86 net yards and two score, while Kinsey Williams (Holland Patent, N.Y.) collected 61 more on four carries for a touchdown as well.
- Brandon Gwinner (Schenectady, N.Y.) completed 9-of-21 passes for 167 yards and two touchdown strikes, while sophomore Johnny Vigliotti (Syracuse, N.Y.) went 2-for-3 for 21 yards.
- Ryan Zophy (Canastota, N.Y.) led the Mustang receiving corp with 46 yards on two receptions, while Jermaine Cooper (New York, N.Y.) and Petrit Boga (Bronx, N.Y.) each added 38 and 34 yards behind two receptions apiece.
- Hartwick quarterback Grant Harman completed 27-of-53 passes for 384 yards and three touchdowns, also throwing two interceptions.
- Dylan Mucci led the Hawk receiving unit with 149 yards on nine catches.
- Backs Deondrade Wells (Goshen, N.Y.) and Jose Garcia (New York, N.Y.) each collected 10 total stops for the Mustangs, both registering a pass break up, and Wells an interception.
- Rob Heitzmann (Oriskany, N.Y.) added nine tackles, including one for a loss of six yards. Mike Bodnar (Miller Place, N.Y.) added six stops, a tackle for a loss of one yard, a pass break up and an interception returned for eight yards.
- Today's win is the fourth straight for the Mustangs in conference play.
- Morrisville State returns to Drake Field for the home finale against Brockport next Saturday, Nov. 10 at 1 p.m. Brockport snuck past Cortland earlier today by a 21-16 final.
Morrisville State College's curricula are enriched with applied learning and pave the way for opportunity at both the Morrisville and Norwich campuses. An action-oriented, interactive learning lab, the college is a national leader in technology and has been lauded for its exemplary, innovative and effective community service programs.
The college was ranked among the Best Regional Colleges in the North by U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges 2018 issue and was also recognized in the Top Public Schools, Regional Colleges North in the 2018 Best Colleges rankings. For more information about Morrisville State College, visit www.morrisville.edu.