Cardinals pick up exciting road win over Guilford
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Freshman Andrew Ouellette took a kickoff 94 yards to paydirt with 4:19 to play and CUA's defense held off Guilford as the Cardinals downed the Quakers 23-22 on Saturday afternoon. With the win CUA improves to 4-5 overall and 2-3 in the ODAC.
CUA gained only 217 yards of offense on the day and gained only 12 first downs as the offense struggled throughout the contest. Freshman Mike Pitsenberger returned to the lineup and ran for a team-high 66 yards on 22 carries, while sophomore Alonzo Cooke was also back in action as he caught a team-high five passes for 22 yards. Sophomore Greg Cordivari completed 19 of 34 passes for 170 yards, while Ouellette totaled 128 yards in kick returns.
Freshman Conor Stueckler continued his strong finish to the season as he led CUA with eight tackles, including 1.5 for loss, while Dylan O'Shea, Mike McGarry and Anthony Albanese all totaled six tackles.
Guilford's Bailey Crego rushed for a game-high 148 yards on 26 carries, while Zac Halbert completed 11 of 18 passes for 127 yards and a touchdown. David LaPlaca led the home team with ten tackles and two other Quakers had eight tackles.
"This wasn't our best game by any stretch," CUA head coach Dave Dunn said following the game. "For some reason we just couldn't get our offense in sync. They (Guilford) blitzed on every down, which we knew they'd do and we practiced for all week, but we just couldn't get things going."
He continued, "I thought our defense played well though and the important thing is we hung on for the win. A lot of the kids making plays today were our young guys so that is very encouraging."
Guilford got on the board first when DJ Wilson scored on a 30-yard pass from Billy Watkins with 7:11 remaining in the opening quarter. The Quakers then went up by two sores with 2:52 remaining in the first on a 34-yard touchdown run by Crego.
CUA began the second quarter with the ball and went 43 yards in seven plays and scored on a one yard Pitsenberger run to make it a 14-7 game.
A CUA safety put the Quakers on top 16-7 with 4:55 remaining before halftime, but the Cardinals got the ball back on a Cole McDonough interception and five plays later cashed in on a four-yard Pitsenberger touchdown run. That made it a 16-14 game, which is how the score remained as the teams headed into halftime.
Following a scoreless third quarter CUA took its first lead of the game on a 37-yard field goal by freshman Connor Maloney with 8:36 remaining in the contest. On its ensuing possession Guilford took the lead right back though as the Quakers marched 63 yards in nine plays and scored on a Ben King 34-yard touchdown reception. Guilford then went for two, but the CUA defense stopped the Quakers to keep the score at 22-17 with 4:32 to go.
On the very next play Ouellette returned his second kick for a touchdown this season with a 94-yard scamper. The Cardinals then went for two, but they were stopped, and that kept their lead at one, 23-22. "Andrew really has a knack for those returns," Dunn said. "We put him back there for the first game this season, he broke a long one, and he hasn't looked back all season. He's done a great job in that position for us all season."
On the Quakers next drive the CUA defense stood tall and forced a turnover on downs, giving the ball back to the Cardinals offense. CUA then ran the clock out and held on for the road win.
CUA will close out its 2010 season on Saturday, November 13 when the Cardinals play host to the Bridgewater Eagles on Senior Day. Kick-off from inside Cardinal Stadium is set for 1:00. Fans that can't make it out to the game can watch live on cuacardinals.com.
"I told our kids that we have three meaningful practices left in the 2010 season and we need to make the most of it. We have a chance to send our seniors out with a win and that's our focus."