Mariners Knock Off Nichols in Shootout; Wetherbee Rushes for 247 yards
CASTINE, Maine -- Billy Wetherbee and Michael Fahey combined for 426 yards, and six touchdowns, to lead Maine Maritime to a 63-52 win over Nichols in a New England Football Conference game Saturday. The Mariners improved 1-3 NEFC, 1-5 overall, while the Bison dropped to 0-5, 1-6.
Wetherbee rushed for a career-high 247 yards on 20 carries and scored twice. The senior fullback surpassed Todd Murphy for 10th on the career rushing list. He now has 2,077 career rushing yards. Fahey added 178 yards on 21 carries and hit paydirt four times.
Nichols quarterback Quillian Respass accounted for the majority of the Bison's yards and all of their scores. The sophomore was 19 of 27 for 331 yards through the air with four touchdowns and carried 27 times for 205 yards and four scores.
Maine Maritime scored on its opening possession. Fahey capped a 9-play, 84-yard drive, with a 13-yard sprint. Wetherbee's two-point conversion run gave the Mariners an 8-0 lead.
The Bison answered on the enusing possession when Respass found the endzone on a 26-yard run. Grant Klimek's kick sailed left to keep the Mariners ahead 8-6.
Both teams traded a pair of scores to make it 24-19 MMA with 5:48 left before the break. Ryan O'Neal put Maine Maritime ahead 16-6 with an eight-yard run before Respass found Klimek on a 13-yard scoring strike. O'Neal found the endzone again on a 13-yard sprint to put the Mariners up 24-14, before Dylan Rimsky hauled in a 36-yard touchdown pass from Respass to close the gap to 24-19 with 5:48 left before halftime.
Nichols forced a turnover on downs on Maine Maritime's next possession and marched 75 yards, in 1:16, and took its first lead when Respass found Chuck Wooding on a 10-yard scoring strike. The Bison converted the two-point play and took a 25-24 lead with 53 seconds left.
On second and one from the MMA 41, Wetherbee broke loose for a 53-yard run to the Nichols 6. Fahey took care of the rest with a six-yard scoring run to give the Mariners a 32-25 halftime lead.
Maine Maritime opened the second half with four unanswered scores to lead 63-25 with 13:08 left in the game. Wetherbee scored on runs of 67 and 25, while Fahey reached the endzone on runs of one and four.
Nichols finished the game with four unanswered touchdowns. Respass scored on runs of 10, 20 and 26 and hooked up with Xavier Livingston on a 44-yard pass.
Connor Richard led the Bison defense with nine tackles, while Kris Williams and Matt Bradley recorded eight and seven stops.
John Doyon paced the Maine Maritime's with a game-high 11 stops. Frank True added nine tackles and a sack and Michael Burgess recorded six tackles and 1.5 sacks.
The Mariners return to action Saturday, noon, hosting Salve Regina in a NEFC game.