September 24, 2011

Hartwick Football Falls Just Short at Mount Ida

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                NEWTON, MA – Hartwick football dropped from the unbeaten ranks as the Hawks lost a 7-3 decision on the road to Mount Ida (1-2) on Saturday. The Mustangs scored their only points on a 10-yard touchdown pass with 5:58 remaining in the game to take the lead. Hartwick drove all the way to the Mount Ida six yard-line with under two minutes left but the Mustang defense forced a fumble and recovered to put the game away.
            Hartwick's quarterbacks were intercepted four times in the game. The late fumble was the Hawks' fifth turnover, three of which came deep in Mount Ida territory.
            The game marks the lowest-scoring contest the Hawks have played in since a 6-2 win over Pace in 1996. It's also their fewest points scored in a game since Alfred shutout Hartwick 24-0 in 2004.
            Backup quarterback Keegan Corbett (Bennington, VT/Mount Anthony Union) threw for a career-best 223 yards on 12-of-23 passes for Hartwick. Sophomore Frankie Molina (Middletown, NY/Middletown) notched a career-high 113 reception yards on six catches. Senior Jordan Wilkins (Portsmouth, NH/Hyde School) made seven catches for 99 yards.
            Defensively for 'Wick, junior linebackers Bryan Schweitzer (Babylon, NY/Babylon HS) and RJ Roth (New Windsor, NY/Cornwall Central) combined for 20 tackles. Schweitzer had 11 tackles, including one for a loss, and he recovered a fumble. Roth had nine hits, one TFL, and he forced a fumble.
            Hartwick had a difficult time running the ball against the Mustangs. They accumulated just 11 yards on 23 attempts. The Hawks threw for 280 yards and finished with 291 total. Mount Ida accumulated 365 yards of total offense.
             Both teams came away empty in the opening half of play. 'Wick punted on its first drive of the game and Mount Ida missed a 26-yard field goal attempt on their ensuing possession.
            When the Hawks got the ball back, they drove 56 yards down to the Mustang 24. On a 3rd and 4, quarterback Dan Brainard (Owego, NY/Owego Free) was picked off by Jovan Wilkins at the three yard-line on a pass intended for Wilkins.
             The Hawks' defense forced the Mustangs to punt and the offense recorded a solid drive of 16 plays for 64 yards which burned more than 11 minutes off the clock in the second quarter. At the Mustang 18, sophomore Alex Tesoriero (Rensselaer, NY/Columbia HS) attempted to put 'Wick in front with 5:10 left in the half, but his 35-yard field goal attempt was blocked. Not only did the Hawks not cash in any points, but they also lost their starting quarterback during the drive as Brainard was knocked from the game after a Mustang sack.
             In the second half, Mount Ida received the ball first and drove deep into Hartwick's end, taking seven minutes off the clock in the process. Mount Ida quarterback Scott Drosendahl, however, fumbled and Schweitzer recovered on the 'Wick 20 to stop the Mustang threat.
            Corbett connected with Molina for 27 yards and Wilkins for a 30-yard pass on the ensuing Hartwick drive. Tesoriero kicked a 24-yard field goal to cap it and the Hawks led 3-0 with just over four minutes left in the third quarter.
             The Hawks' defense forced a turnover on the Mustangs next possession as Roth knocked the ball loose from receiver Nick Lynch and 'Wick corner Pete Jackson (Groton, NY/Groton HS) recovered.
            Both teams punted on their next possessions before the Hawks got the ball back with 13:22 left to play. After six plays and 38 yards gained, Mack Charles intercepted a Corbett pass at the Mustang 14 and Mount Ida would begin its drive for the go-ahead points.
            On a 3rd and 14 from his own 28, Drosendahl found Jordan Hyman for a huge 41-yard gain. On the next play Drosendahl hit Chris McNally for another 26. Two plays later, Mount Ida was in front as Drosendahl threw to Johrone Bunch for the 10-yard score with six minutes remaining. Bobby Hemman kicked the point after.
            After the kickoff, Frank Greene intercepted Corbett on the Hawks' third play from scrimmage. The Hawks'defense, however, forced a three-and-out and the Blue and White got the ball back with 2:28 to go on their own 25 yard-line.
            Corbett hit Wilkins twice for a total of 25 yards to get the Hawks to midfield, and he then found Molina for a 25-yard catch to get to the Mount Ida 25.
            Corbett found Nick Knauer (Wynantskill, NY/Tamarac HS) for a 16-yard reception to move 'Wick inside the 10-yard-line. On first and goal, Wilkins received a pass from Corbett on the six yard-line but Greene stripped him and recovered with 45 seconds to go to seal the victory for the Mustangs.
            Hartwick (2-1) returns to action on Saturday, October 1 during Homecoming and Reunion Weekend against Ithaca at 2 p.m. The game marks the Empire 8 Conference opener for the Hawks. 
            
            
           

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