Mountie Defense Blanks Post 27-0 On Senior Day
MANSFIELD – Mansfield rolled up a season-high 362 yards, Aren Harris rushed for 106-yards and a touchdown to break the school sprint football season rushing record and Damarkus Jones picked off two passes to lead Mansfield to a 27-0 win over Post University in a CSFL contest on Senior Day at Karl Van Norman Field Saturday afternoon.
Seniors Alex Bertolasio, Joe Bucek, John Capwell, Jarell Gibbs, Sean Green, Evan Ruggles and Spencer Underdown were all honored during pregame ceremonies.
Mansfield set the tone for the afternoon early, recovering an on-side kick on the opening kickoff and going 43 yards on three plays to score on a six-yard touchdown run by freshman Hunter Brown in the first minute of the game.
Post’s next possession ended with an interception by Jones at who returned it 33 yards to the Post three yard line. However, a 31-yard field goal attempt by Mansfield went wide right.
Mansfield capped-off a 13 play, 57 yard drive with a 30-yard field goal by freshman Drew Beckerink early in the second quarter while the Mountaineer defense shut down the Post offense to take a 10-0 lead into halftime.
The Mountaineers got the opening kickoff in the second half and put together a five-play, 74-yard scoring driving capped off by a three-yard touchdown run by Harris. The drive was keyed by a 43-yard pass completion from freshman quarterback Adam Hutchison to Sean Green along with a second Hutchison to Green hookup for nine-yards late in the drive. The score extended the lead to 17-0.
Beckerink’s second field goal of the game, this one for 26-yards, came late in the third quarter and the Mountaineer defense shut down a fourth-and-two play by Post from the Mansfield 41 upping the lead to 20-0.
The game’s final score came off another interception by Jones. The drive was helped by a personal foul and an unsportsmanlike conduct penalties against Post with freshman Keith Brown going up the middle for a 28-yard touchdown.
Mansfield passed for a season-high 241 yards and ran for another 121 yards for a season-best 362 yards in total offense while holding Post to 237 yards.
Harris carried the ball 35 times for 106 yards to surpass the school’s single-season rushing yardage record of 519 yards set by Michael Wallace in 2010. Harris now has a CSFL-leading 534 yards on the season with one game remaining.
Keith Brown picked up 55 yards on eight carries including his 28-yard touchdown. Freshmen quarterbacks Anthony O’Connell and Adam Hutchison combined to complete 13-of-19 passes for 241 yards. O’Connell, who started the game, went 3-3 for 76 yards while Hutchison was 10-16 for 165 yards.
Joe Bucek extended his school career records in receptions and receiving yards by pulling down five catches for 121 yards while Green, Jakob Woods and Danny Diaz-Walton had two catches each. Bucek now has 78 receptions for 961 total yards in his career.
While the offense had one of its most productive games of the year, it was the defense that truly was the star of the game. Jones not only picked off two passes, he also had a team-high nine tackles including eight solo. Spencer Underdown was credited with eight tackles while fellow linebacker John Capwell had seven and Jonathan Badman six. Evan Ruggles recovered a fumble with freshman Nick Sander recording his first collegiate interception.
It was just the second shutout for the Mountaineers since the 2011 season.
Chris Leggio topped the Post defense with a game-high 11 tackles while Patterson added nine. Neajaun Jackson led the running game with 86 yards on 20 carries. Senior quarterback Greg Volpe completed 9-20 passes for 110 yards with Jay’Len Mahan catching five passes for 80 yards.
Mansfield improves to 2-4 on the season and travels to Franklin Pierce next Saturday for the season finale.
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