/seasons/2012/contrib/201211035umvxr

No. 16 Salisbury earns Empire 8 automatic bid with 63-23 win over Utica

More news about: Salisbury

SALISBURY, Md. – The No. 16 Salisbury University football team rushed for a season-high 559 yards and nine touchdowns and claimed the Empire 8 Athletic Conference's automatic qualification to the NCAA tournament with a 63-23 victory over Utica College at Sea Gull Stadium on Saturday.

Senior quarterback Dan Griffin ran for a game- and career-high five touchdowns with 137 yards and classmate superback Joe Benedetti added two scores and a game-best 153 yards on 19 carries on Senior Day.

The nine rushing TDs are the most for Salisbury (7-2, 5-1 Empire 8) since it matched the number in a 70-45 win at Utica last season. SU totaled 606 yards overall on the day; it was the first time Salisbury had over 600 yards of offense since the win against the Pioneers on Oct. 1, 2011.

Up, 7-3, on a with 3:01 left in the first quarter, Salisbury turned it on.

Griffin hit senior slot Ross Flanigan on a 47-yard pass play to the UC 10-yard line, and two plays later, sophomore slot Isaiah Taylor ran it in for a 6-yard touchdown with 1:42 left in the quarter.

After a three and out from the Pioneers, Griffin took the first snap of the second quarter 56 yards down the sideline for a 21-3 lead. Dakota Peel fumbled the ensuing kickoff to linebacker James White on the Utica 24, setting up a Benedetti 13-yard touchdown that made it 28-3 with 12:56 to play in the second.

Utica quarterback Andrew Benkwitt connected with Jeremy Meier on a 58-yard pass and a 9-yard TD strike later in the drive to Joseph Gerbino to cut into the SU lead to 28-10 with 11:46 left in the half, but the Gulls responded with 10-play 75-yard drive, chewing up five minutes, that ended with a 4-yard Griffin score.

Utica (6-3, 4-2) marched to the Salisbury 16 on its next possession but senior safety Chris Everett intercepted Benkwitt in the end zone with 3:31 left to keep the Pioneers off the board.

Leading, 42-10, early in the third junior slot Lonnie Liggins, a transfer for the United States Military Academy, scored a 9-yard touchdown for his first as a Sea Gull to make it 49-10 with 11:03 left in the quarter.

Griffin added two more touchdowns of 2 and 1 yard, respectively sandwiched by a 22-yard rushing TD by UC's Jesse Baldassare and a 15-yard fumble recovery for a score by James Lenahan for the final margin.

The 30 points scored by Griffin in the game move him into second place all-time on SU's points-scored list with 258, six behind Mike Coppa (1984-87). Griffin also has 2,325 passing yards, good for sixth in school history, and his 2,550 rushing yards are eighth best.

Benedetti and Griffin ran for 8.1 yards per carry while Flanigan also posted 81 yards on seven attempts (10.9-yard average). Taylor and Liggins chipped in with 70 and 54 yards, respectively.

Benkwitt was 26-for-37 for 225 yards, a touchdown and interception to lead Utica. Meier posted nine catches and 112 yards. Baldassare had 68 yards and a TD on 17 carries.

Greg Stanton and Sal Carfaro had seven tackles apiece for Salisbury with Stanton picking off his team-leading fifth pass of the season in the fourth quarter. Senior Paul Moore led a group of five with six stops each; he also had a tackle for loss, a fumble recovery and three breakups.

Luke Manolescu paced five Pioneers with double-digit tackles with 15. Lenahan recovered two fumbles for Utica.

Salisbury travels to Frostburg State University next Saturday for the 14th annual Regents Cup beginning at 1 p.m.

Sep. 5: All times Eastern
6:30 PM
Capital at Westminster (Pa.)
7:00 PM
Johns Hopkins at Randolph-Macon
Live stats
7:00 PM
Buena Vista at Hamline
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
McMurry at Trinity (Texas)
Video
7:30 PM
Trine at Manchester
Live stats
8:00 PM
Belhaven at Millsaps
8:00 PM
Lake Forest at Wisconsin Lutheran
Video Live stats
Sep. 6: All times Eastern
6:00 PM
Salisbury at Albright
7:00 PM
Nichols at Dean
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Stevenson at Curry
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Worcester State at WPI
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Delaware Valley at Kean
7:00 PM
Alvernia at Gallaudet
7:00 PM
Anna Maria at Becker
Live stats
7:00 PM
Framingham State at Endicott
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Hope at Millikin
Video Live stats Audio
10:00 PM
Chapman at Pacific
Sep. 7: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Maine Maritime at SUNY-Maritime
12:00 PM
Norwich at Salve Regina
Live stats
12:00 PM
St. John Fisher at Buffalo State
12:00 PM
FDU-Florham at Merchant Marine
Live stats
12:00 PM
Carnegie Mellon at MIT
Video Live stats
12:00 PM
Alfred State at Mass-Dartmouth
Video Live stats
12:00 PM
Wesley at Franklin Pierce
Live stats Tickets
12:00 PM
Brockport at Hobart
12:00 PM
TCNJ at Muhlenberg
Video Live stats
12:00 PM
Allegheny at RPI
12:00 PM
Grove City at Juniata
Video Live stats
12:00 PM
Morrisville State at Bridgewater State
Live stats
12:00 PM
Bethany at Ursinus
Video Live stats
12:00 PM
Fitchburg State at Cortland
Live stats
12:00 PM
North Central (Ill.) at Christopher Newport
1:00 PM
Greensboro at Apprentice
1:00 PM
Lycoming at Susquehanna
Video Live stats
1:00 PM
Western Connecticut at William Paterson
1:00 PM
Plymouth State at Castleton
1:00 PM
Kenyon at Catholic
Video Live stats
1:00 PM
Wilkes at Hartwick
1:00 PM
Montclair State at Southern Virginia
Live stats
1:00 PM
Kalamazoo at Oberlin
1:00 PM
Bluffton at Wooster
Video Live stats Audio
1:00 PM
Methodist at Shenandoah
Live stats
1:00 PM
Dickinson at Washington and Lee
Video
1:00 PM
Averett at Hampden-Sydney
Live stats
1:00 PM
N.C. Wesleyan at Emory and Henry
Video Live stats Audio
1:00 PM
Springfield at Western New England
1:00 PM
Baldwin Wallace at Alma
Preview Live stats
1:00 PM
Franklin and Marshall at Lebanon Valley
1:00 PM
Ithaca at St. Vincent
1:00 PM
Alfred at Thiel
1:00 PM
Westfield State at Union
1:00 PM
Wittenberg at Washington and Jefferson
1:00 PM
Misericordia at McDaniel
1:00 PM
Coast Guard at University of New England
Video Live stats
1:00 PM
Mayville St. at St. Scholastica
1:30 PM
Centre at Hanover
Live stats
1:30 PM
Geneva at Mount St. Joseph
Live stats
1:30 PM
Waynesburg at Muskingum
Video Live stats Audio
1:30 PM
UW-Stevens Point at John Carroll
2:00 PM
Berry at Maryville (Tenn.)
Live stats
2:00 PM
Guilford at Huntingdon
2:00 PM
Otterbein at Ohio Wesleyan
2:00 PM
Simpson at Bethel
2:00 PM
Coe at Augustana
2:00 PM
East Texas Baptist at UW-Platteville
Live stats
2:00 PM
Macalester at Carleton
2:00 PM
Southwestern at Sewanee
Video Live stats
2:00 PM
Wartburg at Greenville
Video Live stats
2:00 PM
Finlandia at Concordia (Wis.)
Live stats
2:00 PM
Martin Luther at Gustavus Adolphus
2:00 PM
Crown at St. Olaf
2:00 PM
Concordia-Moorhead at UW-La Crosse
2:00 PM
St. John's at UW-Stout
Audio
2:00 PM
Augsburg at Ripon
2:00 PM
Lawrence at Grinnell
2:00 PM
Howard Payne at Austin
Live stats
2:00 PM
Carroll at Lakeland
2:00 PM
Wheaton (Ill.) at Monmouth
2:00 PM
Northwestern (Minn.) at Central
2:00 PM
St. Norbert at Aurora
2:00 PM
Carthage at UW-Oshkosh
2:00 PM
Westminster (Mo.) at Nebraska Wesleyan
2:00 PM
Luther at Whittier
Video Live stats
2:00 PM
Whitworth at La Verne
Video Live stats
2:00 PM
Pomona-Pitzer at Lewis-Clark Valley
2:10 PM
Loras at UW-Eau Claire
Video Live stats Audio
2:10 PM
Trinity International at St. Thomas
3:00 PM
Dubuque at UW-Whitewater
3:00 PM
Rockford at MacMurray
Video
3:00 PM
Redlands at George Fox
Video Live stats Audio
3:00 PM
Claremont-Mudd-Scripps at Puget Sound
Video Live stats
6:00 PM
North Park at Anderson
Live stats
6:00 PM
Heidelberg at Adrian
Live stats
6:00 PM
Defiance at Albion
Live stats
6:00 PM
Widener at Rowan
6:00 PM
Moravian at King's
6:00 PM
Birmingham-Southern at LaGrange
Live stats
6:00 PM
Concordia-Chicago at Beloit
7:00 PM
St. Lawrence at Utica
7:00 PM
Marietta at Hiram
7:00 PM
Case Western Reserve at Rochester
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Ohio Northern at Denison
Video Live stats Live stats
7:00 PM
Mount Union at Rose-Hulman
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Olivet at Wilmington
Live stats
7:00 PM
Gettysburg at Bridgewater
Live stats
7:00 PM
Franklin at Benedictine
Live stats
7:00 PM
Washington U. at Chicago
Video Live stats Audio
7:00 PM
Knox at Eureka
7:00 PM
Lyon at Hendrix
7:00 PM
Louisiana College at Stetson
7:00 PM
UW-River Falls at Minnesota-Morris
7:00 PM
Hardin-Simmons at Sul Ross State
Audio
7:00 PM
Rhodes at Illinois College
8:00 PM
Iowa Wesleyan at Cornell

D3football.com Top 25, preseason

The D3football.com Top 25, entering the 2019 season. This is the 17th season of the D3football.com Top 25.

Rank School (No. 1 votes) W-L Points  

D3football.com will 
rank all 247 teams
in Kickoff 2019!
Subscribe now!

1 Mary Hardin-Baylor (24) 15-0 624
2 Mount Union (1) 14-1 599
3 St. John's 12-1 566
4 UW-Whitewater 12-1 555
5 North Central (Ill.) 10-2 482
6 Johns Hopkins 12-2 457
7 St. Thomas 8-2 414
8 Muhlenberg 11-2 405
9 Hardin-Simmons 9-2 397
10 Bethel 11-2 396  
11 Whitworth 10-1 336  
12 Linfield 7-2 291  
13 Brockport 11-1 230  
14 Delaware Valley 9-2 223  
15 Illinois Wesleyan 8-2 197  
16 Berry 10-2 190  
17 John Carroll 9-2 168  
18 Wittenberg 9-1 162  
19 RPI 10-2 152  
20 Centre 10-2 137  
21 Washington and Jefferson 9-2 132  
22 Wheaton (Ill.) 8-2 109  
23 Wabash 9-1 105  
24 Randolph-Macon 9-3 91  
25 St. Norbert 10-2 83

Others receiving votes: Trine 73; UW-La Crosse 71; Wartburg 61; Wesley 59; Washington U. 58; Montclair State 49; Alfred 48; Ithaca 42; UW-Oshkosh 40; Central 29; Case Western Reserve 25; Baldwin Wallace 20; Salisbury 15; Trinity (Texas) 10; Hope 10; Redlands 6; Marietta 3; Trinity (Conn.) 3, MIT 2.

The D3football.com Top 25 is voted on by a panel of 25 coaches, Sports Information Directors and media members from across the country, and is published weekly. Points are awarded on a 25-24-23-22-etc. basis.