GLASSBORO, N.J. (10/9/10) – Rowan University scored the game-winning touchdown with two seconds remaining as the Profs rallied past Kean University, 21-17, in New Jersey Athletic Conference action on Saturday afternoon.
Rowan (4-1, 3-1 NJAC) rallied twice past the Cougars in a back-and-forth fourth quarter.
For Kean (2-3, 2-3 NJAC), senior running back Jason Gwaltney rushed for a season-high 207 yards for the 12-highest single game total in school history.
Rowan took a 13-10 lead with 7:18 left in the game on a 14-yard touchdown pass from Tim Hagerty to Marcus Lee, before the Cougars regained the lead in the final minute of the game when junior quarterback Thomas D'Ambrisi completed the nine-yard touchdown pass to senior Sean Atkins with just 38 seconds remaining.
After the touchback on the ensuing kickoff gave the Profs the ball at their own 20-yard line, Hagerty completed 4-of-5 passes for the final 80 yards, including a 55 yard completion to Lee to move the ball inside the red zone, before hitting Keith Corcoran with the 15-yard touchdown pass on the next play for the go-ahead touchdown with just two ticks remaining on the clock. Corcoran carried the ball in on the two-point conversion to give the Profs the four-point edge.
The Cougars had one last chance, as D'Ambrisi had a 10-yard completion to junior Chris Suozzo, who shuffled the ball off to Louis Haynes for an additional 20 yards before he went down at the Rowan 30-yard line with no time left on the clock.
Three plays after the Cougars' blocked a 24-yard field goal attempt on the opening drive of the game, Kean took a 7-0 lead in the first quarter when D'Ambrisi hit Haynes along the sideline with the 73-yard touchdown reception.
In the second quarter, the Cougars looked to extend the lead to 10-0 when junior safety Jamahl Williams made his sixth interception of the year at the Kean 32-yard line. On the ensuing drive, Gwaltney carried the ball five times for 67 yards, including a season-long 51 yard run from scrimmage to give the Cougars first and goal at the Rowan 10-yard line. However, the Cougars were unable to get in the endzone and the 17-yard field goal attempt was wide left, as the score remained 7-0 at the half.
The Cougars were able to extend the lead to 10-0 in the second half when junior kicker Billy Daniels capped a 7-play, 36-yard drive with the 21-yard field goal with 4:05 remaining in the third quarter.
On Rowan's next drive, senior wide receiver Justin Long had a 17-yard rush to get the Profs to midfield and after two more Rowan rushing attempts, Hagerty connected with junior tight end Kevin DelDonne on the 43-yard touchdown reception. The Cougars were however able to prevent Rowan from pulling to within a field goal when junior linebacker Bekim Bujari blocked the extra point attempt to keep the score at 10-6 with 2:11 left in the quarter.
A pair of Kean turnover in Profs territory on their first two drives in the fourth quarters prevented the Cougars from being able to extend the lead and the Profs would take their first lead of the game when Lee capped the seven-play, 76-yard drive with the 14-yard touchdown reception from Hagerty midway through the final quarter.
In the victory, Hagerty completed 14-of-23 passes for 264 yards and three scores. DelleDonne made four receptions for 104 yards, while Lee added three catches for 75 yards. On the ground, Corcoran added 115 yards rushing.
For the Cougars, D'Ambrisi completed 16-of-27 attempts for 285 yards and two touchdowns, as Haynes had three receptions for a career-best 126 yards and senior tight end Matt Puorro made five catches for 88 yards.
Defensively, senior defensive back Rocky Aliberti made a game-high 11 tackles and added one interception. Senior linebacker Jerome Gordon added nine tackles, while junior defensive back Brandon Jones had two tackles, including one for a six-yard loss, one fumble recovery and two pass break-ups.
Williams made a team-high five solo stops and was one of four players to make seven tackles apiece for Kean. In addition to the blocked extra point, Bujari added seven tackles, including one sack for an 11-yard loss.
The Cougars return home for the next three games and face Western Connecticut State University on Saturday, October 16. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.