Football 11.07.18

Football Holds Charleston Southern to Three Points

Football’s defense overpowered the Charleston Southern Buccaneers, defeating them 37-3 on Saturday afternoon. Monmouth had two 100-yard rushers and junior quarterback Kenji Bahar threw for three touchdowns.

“We are very happy with the win today. When we get into Big South play, we know each game holds significate importance and our focus is to go 1-0 that particular week,” said Head Coach Kevin Callahan.

“In that regard, we got the job done today but how we got the job done is the true story here. We knew going in we had to win the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball and I think you saw just that today. From the defensive line to the front seven stand point, I think we completely dominated the line of scrimmage and controlled the run game and that made it easier to play the passes when they took their shots,” he said.

“Offensively, I think we leaned on them up front. We had two guys go over 100 yards rushing, we were able to pound the way and that opened up some throws and Kenji made some good throws for three scores. It was a total team effort and our team played to the very end,” said Callahan.

The game started off slow for both teams, with each of them unable to get points on their first two drives each.

Then late in the first, The Hawks went 62 yards down the field, 57 of which came on the ground. Monmouth ended the drive with an eight yard rushing touchdown by sophomore running back Pete Guerriero.

Guerriero finished the game with 117 rushing yards on 22 carries. Alongside Guerriero, the Hawks ran for a total 295 rushing yards, with freshman running back Juwon Farri coming in second with 100 rushing yards.

“The game plan all week was to get our offense going, get our tempo up,” Guerriero said. “It is easier when our offensive line dominates up. We can rotate the running backs and keep us fresh and tired, it is something we can gash a defense on.”

The Blue and White scored on their next two drives, as both drives went for over 76 total yards.

The Hawks went up 14-0 on a six yard receiving touchdown by senior wide receiver Vinny Grasso.

On the next drive, sophomore wide receiver Terrance Greene Jr. scored his first career touchdown on a 17-yard pass from Bahar.

Junior kicker Matt Mosquera scored the last points of the half on a 44-yard field goal as time expired, making it the 24-0 at the half.

Mosquera was named Big South Special Teams Player of the Week for the second week in a row.

In the third quarter, Mosquera kicked another field goal on their opening drive of the second half, this time from 36 yards out. The field goal was set up by a sophomore defensive back Justin Terry interception.

The Buccaneers got on the board on their next drive, kicking a 22-yard field goal to make it 27-3 Hawks.

In the fourth quarter, Monmouth added to their lead with Mosquera’s third field goal of the game, this one from 25 yards. On the Hawks next drive, Bahar through an 18-yard pass to senior wide receiver Reggie White Jr., making it the eventual final score of 37-3.

“What we are seeing is a group (defense) that is gaining more confidence week by week,” Callahan said. “We are seeing a group that is getting some guys back that we didn’t have earlier in the season and that has helped. The more success they have, the more confidence they play with, the more confidence they play with, the more success they have. I like the way that’s trending, I like the way they are playing. They trust one in another, they are hustling, and they are playing for each other. Whenever you exhibit those characteristics, you are going to play good defense.”

For the game, Bahar finished with 155 passing yards on 15 completions.

Greene Jr. led the team with 63 receving yards on six receptions.

On defense, sophomore linebacker Erik Massey and senior defensive lineman Ryan Schoer led the team with tackles with four each.

Next up, Monmouth (7-2, 3-0 Big South) takes on No. 2 Kennesaw State for the right for first place in the Big South. Kickoff is at 12:00 p.m. at Kessler Stadium.

PHOTO TAKEN by Karlee Sell