/seasons/2012/contrib/201210278cavvk

Utica Football Wins Fourth Straight; Sets Stage for First Place Showdown at Salisbury

More news about: Utica

Box Score

Utica 31, Alfred 7 - Football Final

Utica, NY (10/27/2012) – The Utica College football team notched arguably one of its biggest wins in program-history on Saturday as the Pioneers, winners of four in a row, topped visiting Alfred University 31-7 in Empire 8 Conference play on the turf at Charles A. Gaetano Stadium.  The Pioneers (6-2, 4-1 Empire 8), who tied the school-record for wins in a single season, will now head to nationally-ranked No. 8 Salisbury, also 4-1 in the E8, next Saturday for a shot at sole possession of first place in the conference. 

"This is the type of win that our program has been working towards since its inception," said Head Coach Blaise Faggiano. "We came out in the first quarter and really set the tone for the contest. We played with discipline and we put together four full quarters for the third straight week.  I've said it before, but I could not be more proud of our student-athletes, coaching staff and everyone who allows this program to operate at such a high level.  We still have a long road to go against two very tough teams.  We have to get right back to it and start preparing for a very good Salisbury team - but we are certainly going to enjoy this one." 

The Pioneers jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the first 19 minutes of the contest and never looked back, compiling 471

Anthony Cipoletti
Anthony Cipoletti registered a game-high 1.5 sacks
yards of total offense, while holding Alfred to just seven points and 237 yards. The UC defense came to play once again, holding its opponents to seven points or less in each of the last three games.  UC, which had never beaten Alfred in 11 previous meetings prior to the win, has outscored its opponents 114-14 over the course of their last three conference victories. 


Senior wide receiver Jeremy Meier opened the scoring on the afternoon with a 36 yard touchdown reception from senior quarterback Andrew Benkwitt to give the Pioneers' an early 7-0 lead.  Meier finished the day with seven catches for 135 yards and two scores.  He headed into the contest needing just three yards receiving to break the College's career receiving yards record set by Cody Elliot back in 2009.  Meier now has 2,252 career receiving yards.  Meier needs two more catches in the next two games to break the school-record for receptions in a career, which is also currently held by Elliot. He has 171 catches in four seasons. 

Shawn Mitchell
Shawn Mitchell intercepted two passes for UC
Benkwitt again found pay dirt, this time hitting Jamie Murphy from 24 yards out, to give UC a 14-0 lead with 9:08 left in the first half.  Benkwitt completed 26-of-37 passes for 364 yards and three touchdowns en route to becoming the first 10,000 yard passer in program-history.  He has thrown for over 300 yards and at least three touchdowns in each of the last four games.  Murphy finished the day with two catches for 41 yards. 


The Saxons (4-3, 3-2 Empire 8) were hampered by injuries early on, as they lost their top three offensive threats in the first half of play.  Their top two running backs Chuck Beckwith and Austin Dwyer both left the game with injuries after combining for just seven carries, while starting quarterback Zach Sopak also had to leave the game with an injury after attempting just eight passes. 

Alfred was able to muster one first half score, an eight yard pass from backup QB Joe Enslin to Jonathan Ruffing, to cut UC's lead to 14-7 with 5:27 to go in the half.  But the Pioneers were able to capitalize on a Shawn Mitchell interception late in the half, which led to freshman kicker Thomas Woodburn's 36 yard field goal as the first half clock expired with the Pioneers' on top by ten, 17-7.

The second half proved to be all Utica as they controlled the time of possession, holding the ball for over 20 of the final 30 minutes in the game.  UC's defense also forced six second half punts, as they held the Saxons scoreless.

Junior running back Jesse Baldasssare posted a second half touchdown to put UC on top 24-7 in the third quarter, while Meier sealed the victory with a 15 yard touchdown reception with 9:03 left to go in the game to close out the scoring.  Baldassare rushed the ball 25 times for 107 yards on the afternoon.  His third consecutive 100 yard rushing game propelled him into third place on the College's all-time rushing list (905 career rushing yards), surpassing 2005 graduate Paul Hart.

Sophomore cornerback Shawn Mitchell intercepted two key passes for the Pioneers and he also added four tackles.

Jeremy Meier
Jeremy Meier broke the school-record for career receiving yards
Sophomore Jon Treen led the UC defense with 11 tackles and a half of a sack, while junior linebacker Dana Christofferson chipped in with eight tackles.   Anthony Cipoletti stepped it up and posted 1.5 sacks for UC, while senior captain Genaro Scampone and freshman defensive end Nick Woodman each chipped in with one sack. 


Alfred's Andy Ruddock posted a game-high 12 tackles for forced one fumble.  Alfred backup quarterback Joe Enslin completed 11 passes for 128 yards and one touchdown, while Maleke Fuentes caught a team-best six balls for 80 yards.  Malcolm Downey carried the ball nine times for 34 yards for the Saxons. 

UC's Matt Dunn, a preseason All-American, caught a game-high eight balls for 105 yards.  Baldassare also chipped in with six catches for 54 yards out of the backfield.  As a team the Pioneers set a new single-season record for receiving yards, as they now have 2,800 for the year. 

Utica, which set a new school-record for conference victories with four, will head to No. 8 Salisbury in Maryland on Saturday to take on the Sea Gulls at 12 p.m.  Salisbury is coming off of their first-ever Empire 8 Conference loss at Ithaca, 21-14, on Saturday.  Alfred will return home next Saturday to take on Frostburg. 

Quick Hitters:  The UC defense tied the school-record for most tackles for a loss in a single game, totaling 12 … Meier set a new single-season scoring record after his two touchdown catches, surpassing Jake Scott's old record of 72 points … Meier also broke the school's single-season receiving yards record – he needs just 13 more yards to become the program's first 1,000 yard receiver in a single-season … Meier needs eight catches to break the school's single-season receptions record of 65 … Benkwitt broke his own single-season passing yards record and he now has 2,646 for the year … Benkwitt is currently averaging 330 yards passing per game – no quarterback in school-history has ever finished the year averaging 300+ passing yards per game … Baldassare needs 84 yards rushing to move into fourth place on the College's single-season rushing yards list – he currently has 697. 

Aug. 31: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Moravian at King's
7:00 PM
Methodist at Campbell
7:00 PM
Alfred State at Coast Guard
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Allegheny at Thiel
7:00 PM
Stevenson at Frostburg State
7:00 PM
Wesley at Delaware Valley
7:00 PM
Mayville St. at Buena Vista
7:30 PM
Manchester at Trine
Video Live Stats
8:00 PM
McMurry at Okla. Panhandle
8:00 PM
Millsaps at Belhaven
8:00 PM
Greenville at Millikin
Sep. 1: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Salisbury at Albright
7:00 PM
Mount Ida at Mass-Dartmouth
7:00 PM
Fitchburg State at Curry
7:00 PM
Johns Hopkins at Washington and Lee
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
FDU-Florham at TCNJ
7:00 PM
MIT at Becker
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Westfield State at Nichols
7:30 PM
Anna Maria at WPI
Video Live Stats
7:30 PM
Gettysburg at Bridgewater
Sep. 2: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Grove City at Juniata
Live Stats
12:00 PM
Framingham State at Endicott
Video Live Stats
12:00 PM
Worcester State at Salve Regina
Live Stats
12:00 PM
Maine Maritime at SUNY-Maritime
12:00 PM
Norwich at Morrisville State
12:00 PM
Bethany at Ursinus
Video Live Stats
12:00 PM
Brockport at Hobart
12:00 PM
Augustana at Cortland
12:00 PM
Bridgewater State at Buffalo State
Live Stats
12:00 PM
Carnegie Mellon at Washington U.
Video Live Stats Live Stats
12:30 PM
N.C. Wesleyan at Mount Union
Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Wilkes at Muhlenberg
1:00 PM
Kalamazoo at Oberlin
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Catholic at McDaniel
1:00 PM
Heidelberg at Olivet
1:00 PM
Franklin and Marshall at Lebanon Valley
1:00 PM
Alma at St. Vincent
1:00 PM
Castleton at Plymouth State
1:00 PM
Lycoming at Susquehanna
1:00 PM
UW-Oshkosh at John Carroll
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Alfred at Ithaca
1:00 PM
Misericordia at Merchant Marine
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Albion at Wabash
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Dickinson at Randolph-Macon
Video
1:00 PM
Bluffton at Wooster
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Union at Husson
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Springfield at Western New England
1:00 PM
Wittenberg at Westminster (Pa.)
1:00 PM
St. John Fisher at Washington and Jefferson
1:00 PM
Ferrum at Emory and Henry
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Averett at Hampden-Sydney
1:00 PM
Berry at Maryville (Tenn.)
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Waynesburg at Muskingum
Live Stats
1:00 PM
William Paterson at RPI
1:00 PM
Franklin at Thomas More
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Greensboro at Apprentice
1:00 PM
Case Western Reserve at Chicago
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Kenyon at Sewanee
1:30 PM
Centre at Hanover
1:30 PM
Mount St. Joseph at Capital
Video Live Stats
1:30 PM
Baldwin Wallace at Defiance
Live Stats
1:30 PM
Earlham at Wilmington
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Birmingham-Southern at LaGrange
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
St. Norbert at UW-Stevens Point
2:00 PM
Carthage at Aurora
2:00 PM
Hope at Monmouth
Audio
2:00 PM
Guilford at Huntingdon
2:00 PM
UW-Stout at Simpson
2:00 PM
Concordia-Moorhead at Nebraska Wesleyan
2:00 PM
Rockford at MacMurray
2:00 PM
Finlandia at Concordia (Wis.)
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
St. Scholastica at St. John's
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Dubuque at Bethel
2:00 PM
Westminster (Mo.) at Gustavus Adolphus
2:00 PM
Macalester at Carleton
2:00 PM
Grinnell at St. Olaf
2:00 PM
Hamline at Crown
2:00 PM
UW-Whitewater at Illinois Wesleyan
2:00 PM
Whitworth at Central
2:00 PM
Coe at UW-River Falls
2:00 PM
Loras at Elmhurst
2:00 PM
Concordia-Chicago at Ripon
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Presentation at Lawrence
2:00 PM
George Fox at UW-Platteville
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Lake Forest at Beloit
2:10 PM
UW-Eau Claire at St. Thomas
Live Stats
3:00 PM
Austin at Bacone
4:00 PM
Puget Sound at La Verne
5:00 PM
Western Connecticut at Hartwick
6:00 PM
Ohio Northern at Adrian
Live Stats Audio
6:00 PM
North Park at Anderson
7:00 PM
Christopher Newport at Southern Virginia
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Brevard at Davidson
7:00 PM
Gallaudet at Shenandoah
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Otterbein at Ohio Wesleyan
7:00 PM
Marietta at Geneva
7:00 PM
Widener at Rowan
7:00 PM
St. Lawrence at Utica
7:00 PM
Southwestern at Denison
7:00 PM
Martin Luther at Minnesota-Morris
7:00 PM
Carroll at Lakeland
7:00 PM
Rose-Hulman at Illinois College
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Trinity Int'l at Wisconsin Lutheran
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Sul Ross State at Texas-Permian Basin
7:00 PM
Luther at UW-La Crosse
7:00 PM
Wayland Baptist at Louisiana College
8:00 PM
Knox at Eureka
Video Live Stats
8:00 PM
Northwestern (Minn.) at Augsburg
8:00 PM
Iowa Wesleyan at Cornell
8:00 PM
Robert Morris-Chicago at North Central (Ill.)
8:00 PM
Wheaton (Ill.) at Benedictine
8:00 PM
Lyon at Hendrix
8:00 PM
Howard Payne at Southwestern Assemblies
10:00 PM
Trinity (Texas) at Redlands
10:00 PM
Rhodes at Willamette
Live Stats
Maintenance in progress.