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Engineer Football Team Drops Early Lead, Falls To Salve Regina, 32-13

By Thomas J. Kilpatrick

TEAM MEMBER

Despite the cancellation of all National League Football and NCAA Division I Football games, Division III MIT faced Salve Regina University on Saturday. It was a game of lost opportunities and mistakes for the MIT football team. The Engineers led 13-6 early on the strength of touchdown runs by tailbacks Kale D. McNaney ’05 and Temitope O. Sonuyi ’05, but were not able to extend the lead on this beautiful Newport, Rhode Island day. Salve took the lead with touchdowns in the second quarter to make it 18-13 and never relinquished their advantage. The final score was 32-13.

The MIT offense had some good drives, but stalled often as it only converted one of ten third down opportunities. Sonuyi rushed for 81 yards, McNaney for 72, and fullback Kip M. Johann-Berkel ’02 for another 21 yards. Quarterback Philip M. Deutsch ’04 completed 10 passes for 113 yards and 82 of those yards were to receivers Robert R. Owsley ’02 and Keith Y. Battocchi ’02.

However, the offense also committed four costly turnovers and missed several opportunities for touchdowns when open receivers were near the end zone and passes were batted away or fell incomplete. These plays, in addition to some homer officiating, may have doomed the team in the end.

That’s not to say the Engineers didn’t give a good effort in the second half, though, as the they trailed only 24-13 during much of that time. The defense played heroically to keep the squad in the game by forcing three fumbles recovered by Brian C. Alvarez ’02, Michael J. Harvey ’04 and Thomas J. Hynes ’02 (who also contributed six unassisted tackles). Defensive back Corey D. Carter ’03 may have been MVP of the day, as he forced one of the fumbles deep in MIT territory to prevent Salve from totally dominating the game. He also had a key pass breakup and some big hits on special teams. Another defensive star was inside linebacker Stephen D. Lovell ’04, who led the team with 11 tackles.

Credit must also be given to Salve, whose brutal “Wing-T” rushing attack controlled the clock and gained 329 yards on the ground. The Engineers fell to 1-1 in the New England Football Conference, and have been gearing up this week for tomorrow’s home game against Curry College at 1:30 p.m.