ALFRED, NY — The Alfred University football team racked up 555 yards of offense and forced four turnovers in beating visiting Frostburg (MD) State, 40-14, Saturday afternoon on Merrill Field.
In his first collegiate start, AU junior quarterback Joe Enslin threw for 302 yards and three touchdowns as the Saxons snapped a two-game losing streak to improve to 5-3 overall and 4-2 in Empire 8 Conference play. With the loss, Frostburg falls to 3-6 (1-5 Empire 8)
AU freshman wide receiver Maleke Feuntes ran the Wildcat formation to perfection, rushing 16 times for 109 yards and a touchdown. Senior free safety Jon Jackson, inserted as a wideout in the Wildcat, ran six times for 73 yards and two touchdowns.
The game didn't start out well for the Saxons, as Frostburg drove to the AU 1-yard line before fumbling. After a short AU punt gave Frostburg the ball at the AU 29-yard line, Bobcat quarterback Ken Emmons scored on a 29-yard run on the first play of the drive. AU answered, as Fuentes scored on a five-yard run with 38 seconds left in the first to cap a 10-play, 64-yard drive.
Frostburg regained the lead on its next possession, taking only three plays and 39 seconds to go 50 yards, as Emmons hooked up with wide receiver Antonio Wood on a 51-yard TD pass eight seconds into the second to put the Bobcats up 14-7. The visitors would not score again, as the Saxons tallied two second-quarter touchdowns to go into intermission with a 21-14 advantage.
With 13:08 left on the second-quarter clock. Enslin hit senior tight end Adam Schutz on a short pass and Schutz ran down the left sideline before barreling over a Frostburg defender at the goal line to complete the 40-yard touchdown play. With just under a minute left in the half, Jackson scored on a five-yard run to finish off a six-play that started after Frostburg fumbled at its own 45-yard line.
Alfred took the second-half kickoff and drove 73 yards in seven plays, with Jackson sprinting in from 21 yards out to give the Saxons a 28-14 lead 3:33 into the third. Enslin hit junior wide receiver Jonathan Ruffin with a 45-yard touchdown pass with five seconds left in the third; the extra point failed and AU led 34-14. The Saxons closed out the scoring with just under six minutes left in the game, driving 84 yards in 11 plays over six minutes, as Enslin connected with Fuentes on a six-yard scoring pass.
AU dominated time of possession, 26 minutes to 24 minutes, and had 24 first downs to 15 for the visitors. Alfred forced two fumbles and had two interceptions, and the Saxon offense didn't turn the ball over once. The AU defense was outstanding in the second half, allowing only 79 yards offense after intermission (282 for the game).
Enslin completed 18 of 32 passes for 302 yards. Schutz (82 yards) and Fuentes (73) each had five catches, while Ruffin finished with four catches for a game-high 93 yards. Fuentes and Jackson led a Saxon rushing attack that ran for 253 yards, despite missing its top three runners: junior tailbacks Chuck Beckwith and Austin Dwyer and senior tailback Tyler DeRosa. DeRosa was lost to the second to injury on Sept. 22 and Beckwith and Dwyer went down for the year during last weekend's loss at Utica. Combined, the trio has more than 1,000 rushing yards this year.
Emmons threw for 127 yards and ran for a team-best 78 yards. AU held the Bobcats' leading rusher, tailback Chuky Iweh, to 35 yards on nine carries.
Senior nose guard Mike Raplee had nine tackles (1 ½ for loss) and a forced fumble to lead the AU defense. Sophomore tackle Willie Parker had five tackles (3 ½ for loss) and fumble recovery, and sophomore linebacker J.R. Britton had eight tackles. Jackson had three solo tackles and his team-leading sixth interception.
Defensive backs Keith Smith and Brendon Blanchette each had 10 tackles to lead the Frostburg defense. Linebacker Rowan Pinkett had nine tackles and tackle Jeremiah Williams had four tackles and a sack.
Alfred wraps up its regular season next Saturday, Nov. 10, at 1 p.m. at Empire 8 Conference rival Hartwick College.