SEPTEMBER 15TH MAC SCORES

SEPTEMBER 15TH MAC SCORES

Friday, August 31, 2018

Around the MAC - Widener Football Drops Heartbreaker in Double Overtime to Rowan

Courtesy of Widener University Sports Information
CHESTER, Pa. – The Widener University football team raced out to an early lead, but on the strength of some big special teams plays, the Rowan Profs topped the Pride in a heartbreaker, 41-34 in double overtime, opening the season for both teams on Thursday night.



In stark contrast to last season's game which ended in a 6-0 final, the Blue and Gold got the quick jump, scoring three times in the first 11 minutes to take a 21-7 lead on a 38-yard pass from Sean McGaughey to Chris Randle with 4:11 to go in the first. Rowan scored on the next series and the squads traded touchdowns in the second quarter as Widener took a 28-21 lead into halftime.


Opening the third period, the Profs chopped into the lead with a field goal. Neither team scored again until Larry Eimer connected on a 33-yard field goal to extend the Pride edge to 31-24. On the ensuing kickoff, Elijah Rehm took the ball the length of the field to knot the score at 31-31. The Pride had a chance in the waning seconds, but a field goal attempt came up short forcing the extra frame.

After the two teams each scored three in the opening possession of OT, Rowan was able to punch in a score from four yards out. Widener responded, getting the ball down to the nine on a pass from McGaughey to James Gillespie. A run on first down from Donte' Harrell brought the ball to the five, but the drive stalled in the final three plays.

BY THE NUMBERS
  • Harrell led the Pride on the ground with 93 yards and two touchdowns in his first game since October 15, 2016 after missing last season with an injury.
  • Randle ran 19 times for 85 yards as well as catching five passes for 45 yards. He scored a pair of touchdowns total for the game.
  • Gillespie had a career-best 111 yards receiving in the contest.
  • In his debut with the Pride, Shane Mulhern led the team with 13 tackles. Anthony Jordan followed closely with a career best 12.
  • Eimer's 44-yard field goal in overtime was the longest for a Widener kicker in three years.

FIRST QUARTER NOTES
  • After neither team scored in its first possession, set up by good field position after a Rowan punt from deep in its own territory, WU took the ball 44 yards on eight plays, capped by a one-yard plunge by Harrell to go up 7-0.
  • The Profs countered on the kickoff with an 83-yard return for a score.
  • Widener moved the ball well on its next possession, going 63 yards in nine plays. Harrell once again found paydirt, scoring from nine yards out.
  • After a Rowan fumble, the Blue and Gold wasted no time in responding as McGaughey found Randle from 36 yards out, pushing the lead to 21-7.
  • Harrell was the story of the opening frame. The running back who missed last season with an injury ran the ball six times for 25 yards and two scores.

SECOND QUARTER NOTES
  • Leading 21-14 just less than five minutes into the second quarter, Widener capped an eight play, 93-yard drive that started when Rowan turned the ball over on downs in the end zone with a three-yard run from Randle.
  • Late in the frame, the Profs scored the final points of the quarter as Cory Madden took a swing pass from Riley Giles and scampered eight yards for the score.
  • Jordan had six of his tackles in the period.

  • THIRD QUARTER NOTES
  • Neither team was able to get much offense going in the quarter as the only points came on the opening possession when the Profs kicked a field goal, chipping the lead to 28-24.
  • Mulhern had six takedowns in the frame.
  • Gillespie caught two passes for 40 yards.

FOURTH QUARTER NOTES
  • Widener broke a 20-plus minute scoreless streak between the two teams when Eimer drilled a 33-yard field goal with just less than six minutes remaining, extending the advantage to 31-24.
  • The lead was shortlived as Rehm took back his second kickoff of the night, this time for 100 yards to knot the score.
  • Mike Pawlowski had two tackles and his first sack of the season in the frame.

OVERTIME NOTES
  • The Blue and Gold started on offense and mustered a 44-yard field goal by Eimer in its possession.
  • Rowan responded with a field goal of its own to send the game into a second extra frame, where the Profs scored a TD.
  • Widener moved the ball and had a first-and-goal from the nine, but couldn't punch in from the five on three tries.
  • Eimer's field goal was the longest for a Widener kicker since Ryan O'Hara blasted a 52-yarder against Delaware Valley on November 14, 2015.

UP NEXT
The Pride returns to action when it faces rival Lycoming on Saturday, September 8 in a non-conference matchup. Kickoff from Hirschmann Field at Quick Stadium is set for 1:07 p.m.