November 17, 2012

No. 11 Salisbury holds off Rowan, 17-9, in NCAA tournament first round

More news about: Salisbury

SALISBURY, Md. – Senior superback Joe Benedetti ran for 125 yards and two touchdowns and senior linebacker Rodney Hill blocked an extra point and intercepted Rowan University's Paul Hamersma late as the No. 11 Salisbury University football team defeated the Profs, 17-9, in the first round of the NCAA tournament at Sea Gull Stadium Saturday.

Benedetti scored from 10 yards out with 3:19 remaining in the fourth and the Salisbury (9-2) defense picked off Hamersma on consecutive drives to hold on for the win. The Gulls will face Widener University, a 44-14 winner over Bridgewater State College, next Saturday at noon at site to be determined.

Rowan (7-3) took the ball on its own 28-yard line with 3:13 left and gained a first down, on a pair of catches by Anthony Barone to get to the 40-yard line, but was unable to advance further when, on third and 10, Hill snared a Hamersma pass at midfield.

The Profs used their final two timeouts and got the ball back with 1:03 to play following a 31-yard Kyle Hamby punt to the 35. SU was whistled for a roughing-the-pass passer penalty, moving the ball up to midfield, but three incomplete passes later, Rowan faced a fourth and 10 to keep its season alive.

Hamersma dropped back and lofted a pass down the middle of the field that safety Greg Stanton grabbed at the 7-yard line. Stanton's team-leading sixth interception of the season ensured the Sea Gulls will play another week.

SU never trailed, jumping out to a 7-0 lead on the first offensive possession of the game when Benedetti scored his 11th touchdown of the season from 16 yards out. Quarterback Dan Griffin found slot Isaiah Taylor with a 31-yard pass on the play prior to the Benedetti score, which capped a nine-play, 84-yard drive, at the 10:50 mark.

Rowan responded with a touchdown drive of its own right away. Hamersma, who started in place of senior quarterback Louie Bianchini due to injury, completed three straight passes to move the Profs to their 40. Three plays later, he found Frank Giardina for 13 yards and a first down to the Salisbury 30-yard line.

Rowan marched to the 4, and it seemed the Sea Gulls' defense would hold, but Hamersma hooked up with tight end Chris Garcia on fourth and goal from the 2 for a TD with 3:30 left in the first quarter.

Hill, though, came up big on the extra point blocking it to keep the SU lead intact. It was SU's sixth blocked kick of the season.

The teams traded 27-yard field goals in the second and third quarters to make it 10-9 before Benedetti finished a seven-play, 40-yard drive over 3:30, setting up the strong defense in the final three minutes.

Benedetti averaged 5.7 yards on 22 carries while Taylor totaled 110 with 67 receiving and 43 rushing. Griffin was 2-for-6 passing, with both completions going to Taylor, and had 22 yards rushing.

Hamersma was 24-for-46 with 155 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. Keith Corcoran ran for 68 yards on 14 carries and Barone caught a game-high nine passes for 61 yards.

Stanton, Chris Everett and Matt McMurdo each tallied nine tackles to lead the SU defense. Hill finished with six tackles, the interception, blocked kick and a breakup.

Dominic Caruso led Rowan with a game-high 12 tackles. He also posted a tackle for loss and forced fumble.

comments powered by Disqus
Nov. 22: All times Eastern
Final - OT
MIT 27, at Husson 20
Box Score Recap
Final
at Mount Union 63, Adrian 3
Box Score Photos
Final
at Wesley 52, Hampden-Sydney 7
Box Score Recap
Final
at John Carroll 63, Centre 28
Box Score Recap
Final
at Wabash 33, Franklin 14
Box Score Recap
Final
Christopher Newport 29, at Delaware Valley 26
Box Score Recap
Final
at Hobart 22, Ithaca 15
Box Score Recap
Final
Washington and Jefferson 41, at Wittenberg 25
Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Widener 36, Muhlenberg 35
Box Score Recap
Final
at Johns Hopkins 24, Rowan 16
Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Wartburg 37, St. Thomas 31
Box Score Recap
Final
at Wheaton (Ill.) 43, Benedictine 14
Box Score Recap
Final
at UW-Whitewater 55, Macalester 2
Box Score Photos
Final
at St. John's 35, St. Scholastica 7
Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Linfield 55, Chapman 24
Box Score Recap Photos
Nov. 23: All times Eastern
Final
at Mary Hardin-Baylor 27, Texas Lutheran 20
Box Score Recap Recap
Nov. 22: All times Eastern
Final
Salve Regina 48, at Norwich 21
Box Score
Final
at Wabash 33, Franklin 14
Box Score Recap
Final
Washington and Jefferson 41, at Wittenberg 25
Box Score Recap Photos
Final - OT
MIT 27, at Husson 20
Box Score Recap
Final
at Mount Union 63, Adrian 3
Box Score Photos
Final
at Wesley 52, Hampden-Sydney 7
Box Score Recap
Final
at John Carroll 63, Centre 28
Box Score Recap
Final
Christopher Newport 29, at Delaware Valley 26
Box Score Recap
Final
at Widener 36, Muhlenberg 35
Box Score Recap
Final
at Johns Hopkins 24, Rowan 16
Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Hobart 22, Ithaca 15
Box Score Recap
Final - OT
at Framingham State 42, RPI 36
Box Score
Final
at Salisbury 48, Albright 27
Box Score Recap Recap
Final
at St. John Fisher 28, Western Connecticut 14
Box Score
Final
at Morrisville State 52, Utica 41
Box Score Recap
Final
Buffalo State 59, at Waynesburg 36
Box Score Recap
Final
at Wheaton (Ill.) 43, Benedictine 14
Box Score Recap
Final
at Wartburg 37, St. Thomas 31
Box Score Recap
Final
at St. John's 35, St. Scholastica 7
Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at UW-Whitewater 55, Macalester 2
Box Score Photos
Final
at Stevenson 29, Bethany 7
Box Score Recap
Final
at Linfield 55, Chapman 24
Box Score Recap Photos
Nov. 23: All times Eastern
Final
at Mary Hardin-Baylor 27, Texas Lutheran 20
Box Score Recap Recap