Privateers Unable to Get Past Cadets in First Conference Loss
NORTHFIELD, Vt. (October 19, 2013) – The Maritime Privateers suffered their first conference loss of the season on Saturday afternoon to the Norwich Cadets on Sabine Field by the score of 42-21.
The first half was wildly entertaining for both sides as the big play was the theme of the opening half of the game for both sides as Norwich opened up a 13-point lead, but Maritime stormed back and took a one-point edge into the locker room at halftime. However, Norwich answered back in the second half to regain the lead and hold on for the victory.
"I was proud of how our team played, especially battling back the way we did to take the lead going into halftime," said Maritime head football coach Clayton Kendrick-Holmes after the game. "We didn't execute like we needed to in the third quarter, and it cost us the momentum. But we know there is still a lot of football left in this conference race."
Norwich started the game with the ball and on just the second play of the drive, the Cadets broke through the Privateer defense for a 54-yard run by quarterback Keyen Foley for the big run to set up 1st-and-10 at the 13-yard line. Foley then finished off the drive a few plays later on a pass to put Norwich up 7-0.
The Privateers took the ball back after falling behind and used both the ground and air games to chew up some yardage. Junior fullback Kyle Gardner (Amityville N.Y./St. Anthony's) got the drive started with an 11-yard rush, followed by freshman quarterback Ryan Heizman (Commack, N.Y./Commack) completing his second-longest pass of the season for 35-yards to senior wide-out Sean Belsky (West Islip, N.Y./St. John the Baptist ).
Heizman and Gardner completed the remainder of the drive as the pair picked up a few seven and eight-yard chunks per run. On 1st-and-goal, Gardner got the call and punched the ball into the end zone for the touchdown. Sophomore Diogo Dietrich (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil/DePaul Catholic) tied the game at seven with the extra point.
The Cadets got the ball back, but the Maritime defense forced Norwich to punt. However, the Cadets forced and recovered a fumble on the next drive and put up three points with a field goal off the turnover.
Maritime was forced to punt for the first time on the game to give the ball back to Norwich at the Cadets 43-yard line. The first play of the drive was yet another big play as the Cadets slipped through the Privateer defense for a 57-yard touchdown score by Al Georgio.
On Norwich's following drive, junior Hugh O'Brien (Westbury, N.Y./Westbury) made his presence felt in a big way after picking up a crucial fumble with Norwich threatening in Maritime territory. Heizman and Gardner handled the bulk of the following drive as the duo combined for 47 yards on the series including the one-yard touchdown run by Gardner for his second score of the game to pull Maritime within one score at 20-14.
The next drive after Dietrich's kickoff which led to the drive beginning at the Norwich 47-yard line. On the first play of the series, sophomore Kameron Knight (Clayton, N.C./West Johnson) forced a fumble on a run play by Norwich, the ball was then scooped up by senior Chris Klass (Nanuet, N.Y./Nanuet ), who was forced out of bounds deep in Norwich territory.
On the first play of the drive, the Privateers called the number of senior Frank Laino (Rockaway, N.Y./Fort Hamilton), who then took the pitch and sprinted towards the right pylon to tie the game at 20. Dietrich added the extra point and Maritime had its first lead of the game at 21-20 heading into the halftime break.
In the third quarter, both teams punted on their first respective series. The Cadet defense forced another three-and out on the next Privateer possession, but on the low snap of the ball freshman John Arny (Metuchen, N.J./Metuchen) went down to a knee to pick up the ball and was ruled down to give the ball back to Norwich in prime field position.
Norwich picked up a touchdown on the third play of the drive on yet another big play with a 31-yard dash for the score to give the Cadets the lead back at 27-21.
After a roughing-the-kicker penalty extended the next drive for the Privateers, the turnover bug bit Maritime as the following pass was picked off by Norwich. The turnover resulted in a 13-yard touchdown reception from Foley to Dan Jamieson.
The Privateer defense turned the ball over on downs after a 4th-and-3 attempt by Norwich. However, Maritime was unable to move the ball and was forced to punt again. Norwich scored once more and converted on the two-point attempt to increase its total to 42 points
Maritime got the ball back following a 35-yard kickoff return from Klass to set up 1st-and-10. With Heizman back to pass, the quarterback saw no options open down the field and dashed towards the right sideline for a 17-yard gain. On 4th down, Heizman hooked up for a first down with his favorite target of the day in Belsky, who ended the day with four catches for 62 yards.
Two plays later the Cadets picked off a pass in the end zone to take the ball away with just over two minutes left.
The Privateers got the ball back with 27 seconds left on the clock, and junior running back Greg Caneparo (Nanuet, N.Y./Nanuet) picked up one yard, followed by Gardner grabbing 20 more yards on the next play as he finished the afternoon just shy of his third-straight 100-yard game as he ended with 95 yards on the ground.
In addition to Belsky and Gardner on offense, Heizman was responsible for 52 yards on the ground and a career-best 93 yards on seven completions. In addition to Belsky's four catches, senior Dan Fleischman (North Massapequa, N.Y./Plainedge) snagged three catches for 31 yards in the air. Laino also had 40 yards on the ground to average eight yards a carry.
On defense, Knight led the team with 11 tackles followed by nine each from O'Brien and junior linebacker Nick Coffiey(Wilmington, Del./Delaware Military Academy). Junior linebacker Duke Alvora (Harrison, N.Y./Harrison) tied a season-best with eight tackles on the day as well.
Maritime (2-4, 2-1 ECFC) will look to regroup at home next weekend when the squad takes on its second straight team from the state of Vermont as Castleton St. takes a trip to Reinhart Field for a 12 p.m. kickoff. It will also be Youth Day at Reinhart Field in addition to Coach to Cure Muscular Dystrophy Day. Norwich (3-3, 2-1 ECFC) will host Anna Maria next weekend at 4 p.m. on Sabine Field.