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RPI Secures NCAA Playoffs Berth With Shoes Trophy Victory

More news about: RPI

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute's (RPI) defense allowed only 245 yards of offense - just 28 rushing - and forced four turnovers as the Engineers defeated Union College, 20-14, in the Dutchman Shoes Trophy Game at Frank Bailey Field. Not only did RPI improve to 8-2 overall and retain the coveted trophy for the fifth straight season, it won a share of the Liberty League title (4-1) and secured the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Playoffs. 

Senior defensive back Sean Egan led the way with six tackles, including two unassisted, and a pair of interceptions. His second pick came at midfield on the game's final play. Linebacker Jack Hoggard had a team-high seven tackles, including four unassisted and one for a loss (2 yards), while Jack Fallon, another linebacker, had six stops (2 solo). Rory McCarthy also had an interception, on a pass originally broken up by Egan, while Amaechi Konkwo recovered a fumble forced by Alec Hazard on a sack. 

On offense, senior Mike Tivinis rushed for 131 yards on 21 carries for the Engineers, who outgained Union, 386-245. He had 67 yards on back-to-back plays (22, 45) late in the fourth quarter as RPI attempted to run out the clock. Freshman George Marinopoulos completed 19 of 28 passes for 166 yards and two touchdowns, including the go-ahead score from 15 yards out to Keaton Ackermann with 5:19 left in the fourth quarter. Ackermann finished with a team-high five receptions for 48 yards.

Union (7-3; 3-2) had only 28 rushing yards on 27 carries with 217 through the air. Quarterback Nick Cascione completed 16 of 25 passes and a 63-yard touchdown to Griffin Beal. A wide receiver, Beal had six catches for 118 yards. Jake Lombardo made 16 tackles, including 12 solos, a two-yard sack and 1.5 for lost yards (3) to lead the Dutchmen defense.

Rensselaer opened the game with a 24-yard field goal from Christian Kapp on the game's opening drive and then took advantage of a short field when Konkwo recovered a fumble at the Union 16-yard line. Marinopoulos capped the drive with a two-yard touchdown pass to Rob Law for a 10-0 lead with 4:37 left in the first quarter.

Union pulled to within three points, 10-7, when senior running back Connor Kinzelmann scored on a two-yard run up the middle early in the second quarter. Kapp got three points back with a 42-yard field goal with 5:23 to play in the half. The Dutchmen then took the lead on the long pass play from Cascione to Beal with just over a minute remaining in the second quarter.

The only points of the second half was the Marinopoulos to Ackermann touchdown as RPI's defense held Union to just 62 yards of offense - 13 rushing, 49 passing - in the final 30 minutes.

Rensselaer, which is making its fifth NCAA Playoffs appearance and first since 2007, finds out its opponent on Sunday. The first round game will be played next Saturday.

Nov. 18: All times Eastern
3rd - 11:39
14 Husson
14 Springfield
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2nd - 00:27
10 Huntingdon
27 Berry
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Half
0 Western New England
14 Delaware Valley
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Halftime
0 Plymouth State
38 Brockport
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3rd - 14:08
21 Frostburg State
0 Wittenberg
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Start of 3rd
0 Washington and Lee
14 Mount Union
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End of 2nd
20 RPI
17 Wesley
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Halftime
6 Johns Hopkins
14 Washington and Jefferson
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Start of 2nd
3 Monmouth
7 Trine
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1:00 PM
Chapman at Mary Hardin-Baylor
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5:11 1Q
0 Case Western Reserve
0 Illinois Wesleyan
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13:08
0 Lakeland
7 UW-Oshkosh
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1st - 05:52
0 Eureka
6 St. Thomas
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1:00 PM
Franklin at Wartburg
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3:56 1Q
0 St. John's
7 North Central (Ill.)
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3:00 PM
Hardin-Simmons at Linfield
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Nov. 17: All times Eastern
Final
Merchant Marine 35, at Buffalo State 20
@ Newark, Del.
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Nov. 18: All times Eastern
4th - 01:00
32 Muhlenberg
6 Carnegie Mellon
@ Newark, Del. - University of Delaware
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End of 2nd
7 Widener
14 Franklin and Marshall
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3rd - 13:32
7 Susquehanna
7 Albright
Video Live stats Audio
2nd - 00:27
10 Huntingdon
27 Berry
Video Video Live stats Audio
Halftime
0 Plymouth State
38 Brockport
Video Live stats
Start of 3rd
0 Washington and Lee
14 Mount Union
Video Preview Live stats Audio Audio Tickets
Start of 2nd
3 Monmouth
7 Trine
Video Live stats Live stats Audio
End of 2nd
20 RPI
17 Wesley
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Halftime
6 Johns Hopkins
14 Washington and Jefferson
Video Live stats Audio
3rd - 14:08
21 Frostburg State
0 Wittenberg
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Half
0 Western New England
14 Delaware Valley
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3rd - 11:39
14 Husson
14 Springfield
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End of 2nd
7 Curry
34 Framingham State
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12:00 PM
Cortland at Union
5:11 1Q
0 Case Western Reserve
0 Illinois Wesleyan
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1:00 PM
Franklin at Wartburg
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1:00 PM
Chapman at Mary Hardin-Baylor
Video Preview Live stats Tickets
13:08
0 Lakeland
7 UW-Oshkosh
Video Preview Preview Live stats Live stats Audio
3:56 1Q
0 St. John's
7 North Central (Ill.)
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1st - 05:52
0 Eureka
6 St. Thomas
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3:00 PM
Hardin-Simmons at Linfield
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5:00 PM
Salisbury at Ithaca
@ Newark, Del.
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6:00 PM
SUNY-Maritime at WPI
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Nov. 19: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Stevenson at Alfred
@ University of Delaware
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