Football Stifled by Bridgewater State

Football Stifled by Bridgewater State

WORCESTER, Mass. - The Worcester State University football team continues to seek its first win of the season after suffering a 21-9 defeat at the hands of Bridgewater State University in Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference action at Coughlin Field.

With the loss, Worcester State dips to 0-6 overall this season and 0-4 in the MASCAC. Bridgewater State jumps up to 3-3 and 3-1 in conference play.

Worcester State scored the game's first points as junior Kyler Brown (Chelmsford, Mass.) caught a six-yard touchdown pass from sophomore Aaron-Moses Williams (Springfield, Mass.). The score was set up by a 42-yard catch from senior Zach MacAlister (Gardner, Mass.) earlier in the drive. Williams added the extra point, and the Lancers took a 7-0 lead.

Bridgewater State put their first points on the board three and a half minutes into the second quarter after senior Maurice Ashley (Brockton, Mass.) capped a 10-play, 57-yard drive with a six-yard touchdown catch. The extra point attempt was missed, and the Lancers maintained a 7-6 lead. 

The Bears looked poised to take the lead into the half, but a wild 20-play, 89-yard drive that consumed 9:15 ended in a turnover on downs with 14 seconds remaining in the half, and Worcester State went to the locker room clinging to a one-point lead.

Neither team could grab the momentum as the second half got started, but finally with 46 seconds remaining in the third quarter, the Bears took the lead for good on a huge 90-yard touchdown reception from sophomore Nathan Ellis (Dartmouth, Mass.). Ellis found himself wide open down the right sideline, and senior quarterback Stefano D'Emilia (Bridgewater, Mass.) made no mistake in laying a perfect pass into Ellis' arms. Ellis scampered home the rest of the way, and the Bears extended the lead on a two-point conversion to 14-7.

Five minutes into the fourth quarter, Worcester State appeared to have the momentum swing into its favor after a D'Emilia punt went off the back of an offensive lineman and through the back of the endzone for a safety to close the gap to 14-9. On the ensuing Lancer possession, however, senior Mark Wilson (Foxborough, Mass.) intercepted Williams and returned it 46 yards for a touchdown, giving Bridgewater a two-possession lead at 21-9. Neither team would score again, and the Bears would secure their third consecutive win.

D'Emilia finished the evening completing 19 of his 34 attempts for 252 yards and a pair of touchdowns, while Williams finished 13-for-26 for 130 yards, a touchdown and an interception.

Jeremy Soule Jr. (Middleborough, Mass.) had 57 rushing yards on 15 attempts for the Bears, while Kerwin Smith II (Sicklerville, N.J.) finished with 56 yards on 10 rushes. Worcester State's leading rusher was sophomore Amir Mells (Dorchester, Mass.), who ran for 30 yards.

Aided by his huge 90-yard touchdown, Ellis was the game's leading receiver with four catches for 121 yards and the score. MacAlister led Worcester's receiving corps with three receptions for 73 yards.

Leading all players defensively with 12 tackles was Lancer sophomore Nick Ashley (Worcester, Mass.). The sophomore added .5 tackles for loss and a forced fumble in the contest. Lancer AJ Byard (Deerfield Beach, Fla.) and Bear Ben McMahon (Somerset, Mass.) each finished the contest with 11 tackles for their respective teams.

Worcester State will enter its bye week next weekend, before returning to the field on Saturday, October 26 for a road trip to UMass Dartmouth. Bridgewater State will return to action for Homecoming next Saturday, also hosting UMass Dartmouth.