Rensselaer Shuts Out Norwich, 37-0

More news about: RPI

TROY, N.Y. - The Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) football team's offense scored 35 first half points, while the defense held Norwich University to just 14 yards and one first down in the opening two quarters, and the Engineers went on to defeat the Cadets, 37-0. The game was a non-league contest that marked the beginning of the season for both teams.

The Engineers scored three touchdowns on the ground and two through the air as five different student-athletes found paydirt. Senior Nick Schlatz (Bridgewater, MA / Bridgewater-Raynham) started the scoring when he ran in from a yard out on the game's opening drive. Following a missed field goal by Rensselaer, juniorJohn Costello (Winchester, MA / Winchester) made it 14-0 with a five yard run with 35 seconds left in the first quarter. Senior quarterback Jeff Avery (White Plains, NY / White Plains) found sophomore Johnny Ramsdell (Haverhill, MA / Haverhill) in the flat and he ran into the end zone from six yards out at 9:19 of the second quarter for a three touchdown lead. 

Rensselaer then took advantage of a pair of Norwich turnovers. Following a fumble forced by senior linebacker Mark Grimes (Hackettstown, NJ / Hackettstown), the Engineers used six plays to cover 37 yards, finishing in the drive with a five yard run with 4:39 to go in the first half. RPI made it 35-0 five minutes later. One playe after Alexander Greenidge (Miller Place, NY / Miller Place) fell on a muffed punt return, Avery found classmate Logan Gaddar (South Portland, ME / South Portland) in the end zone from 19 yards away. 

RPI added a safety five seconds into the fourth quarter for the final margin. The shutout was the first for the Engineers since blanking Rochester on October 2, 2010 (17-0).

Rensselaer's balanced attack featured 120 rushing yards on seven carries for sophomore Mike Tivinis (Middleton, MA / Masconomet Regional) and 80 yards on the ground from Schlatz. Ten others also carried the ball out of the backfield. Avery completed 14 of 19 passes for 208 yards and the two scores. He was not intercepted. Junior Joey Giacone (Delmar, NY / Bethlehem) caught four passes for 66 yards including a 39 yard reception down the right sideline to set up the first score. 

The Engineers defense held the Cadets to under 100 yards in both rushing (62) and receiving (92). They had three sacks (21 yards lost), seven tackles for lost yards (31) and six pass breakups. Sophomore Sam Barrett (East Andover, NH / Proctor Academy) had a team-high six tackles, while Grimes finished with five stops, including three unassisted, a six yard sack and a forced fumble. 

On special teams, sophomore Christian Kapp (Amawalk, NY / Iona Prep.), who last year played behind consensus All-America Andrew Franks - who was named the starting kicker of the Miami Dolphins on Saturday - was 5 for 5 on point after touchdowns. He also punted twice for 32.0 yards with one that landed inside the 20 yard line.

For Norwich, junior Jake Apthorpe (Honeoye Falls, NY / Honeoye Falls-Lima) led all tacklers with 11 stops. He had four unassisted and 2.0 sacks (8 yards lost). Classmate Benjamin Hummer (Annapolis, MD / St. Mary's) had eight tackles (5 solo). Junior Pierre Noel (Manchester, NH / Manchester Memorial) had a game-high four catches for 44 yards, including a 37 yard long. Senior running back Sam Chaves (Alfred, ME / Massabesic) carried the ball 16 times for 33 yards.

The Cadets host St. Lawrence University in a non-league game on Saturday at 1pm, while the Engineers return to the field at the same time when they travel to Alfred University for a non-league contest.

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