GLASSBORO, NJ – The Rowan University football team suffered a 24-10 setback to 11th-ranked Frostburg State University in a New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) game on Saturday.
It was the first loss of the season for the Profs, who are 3-1 overall and 2-1 in conference play. The Bobcats stay undefeated at 4-0 with a 3-0 NJAC mark.
Frostburg State quarterback Connor Cox (jr. Davidsonville, MD/South River) was 13-of-25 for 238 yards and three scores. Running back Jamaal Morant (jr. Baltimore, MD/Milford Mill) rushed for 89 yards on 26 attempts. Wide receiver Russell Neverdon (sr. Baltimore, MD/Calvert Hall) made six receptions for 80 yards. Wide receivers Joe Beckford (sr. Indian Head, MD/Lackey) and Malik Morris (so. Carney, MD/Dunbar) and tight end Christian DiPaola (jr. Jarrettsville, MD/Harford CC) each caught a touchdown pass.
Defensive lineman Niles Scott (sr. Elkton, MD/Elkton) recorded seven tackles, two for a loss, and one sack. Linebacker Graylin Walker (so. Waldorf, MD/North Point) made seven stops, one for a loss, and recovered a fumble. Defensive back Josh Scales (jr. Bowie, MD/Bowie) registered six tackles, one for a loss. Defensive lineman Jon Milstreed (so. Westminster, MD/Francis Scott Key) had a forced fumble.
For Rowan, quarterback Naldy Tavarez (so. North Bergen, NJ/Union City) went 17-for-33 with 168 yards and a touchdown. Wide receiver Jamel Smith (sr. Trenton, NJ/New Egypt) caught 10 passes for 79 yards and a score. Running back Anthony Diorio (jr. Medford, NJ/Shawnee) ran the ball 21 times for 54 yards.
Linebacker Chris Noesges (sr. Freehold, NJ/Manalapan) totaled eight tackles. Defensive back Shaquille Lee (sr. Millville, NJ/Millville) and linebacker Christian Dawkins (sr. Ocean City, NJ/St. Augustine Prep) each made seven stops. Linebacker Godwin Asamoah (jr. Edison, NJ/Edison) tallied six tackles, one sack and one forced fumble. Defensive back Nate Lanier (so. Sicklerville, NJ/Woodbridge) had two pass breakups and a fumble recovery.
The Bobcats got on the scoreboard first. They started the drive at their own 15 and moved the ball to their 41-yard line. On first down, Cox found Beckford for a 59-yard touchdown with 2:35 left in the opening quarter. The Profs put up points on their ensuing possession. Rowan began at its own 19 and drove into Frostburg State territory with the key play being Tavarez's 26-yard completion to wide receiver J.J. Kulcsar (so. Haworth, NJ/Bergen Catholic). However, the Profs could not break into the end zone, settling for a 22-yard field goal by kicker Tyler Knighton (sr. Gibbstown, NJ/Paulsboro) to make the score 7-3 with 13:01 remaining in the second.
After a punt by the Bobcats, Rowan had the ball at its own five-yard line. The Profs methodically moved the ball down the field with just one play eclipsing 15 yards. Tavarez ended the 13-play, 95-yard drive with an 11-yard touchdown pass to Smith. Knighton's extra point gave Rowan a 10-7 lead (5:09), which it took into halftime.
Frostburg State received the second half kickoff and started at its 43 after a 38-yard return by running back Chad Gleason (fr. Walkersville, MD/Walkersville). Cox finished the drive with a 19-yard TD toss to DiPaola and the Bobcats had a 14-10 advantage (10:30). Later in the stanza, Morris blocked a Rowan punt, which gave Frostburg State a short field at the Profs' 22. The Rowan defense kept the Bobcats out of the end zone but kicker Hassan Mostafa (sr. Columbia, MD/Oakland Mills) booted a 19-yard field goal to increase their lead to 17-10.
In the fourth, Frostburg State had good field position once again, beginning at their 47 after a punt. On the third play, Cox threw another deep ball, finding Morris for a 43-yard touchdown and the final score of the afternoon with 5:06 on the clock. Rowan turned the ball over on downs on its next two possessions.
The Profs head to Christopher Newport University on Saturday, Sept. 30 for a 6 p.m. kickoff.