The Monmouth University Hawks (1-2, 0-1 CAA) faced off against the Georgetown University Hoyas (1-2, 0-1 PL) to earn their first victory of the 2022 season on Saturday, Sept. 17 at Kessler Stadium in West Long Branch.
The Hawks defeated the Hoyas 45-6, improving their all-time series against Georgetown to 3-0.
This 39-point victory marks Monmouth’s largest margin of victory since a 45-0 win over Presbyterian on Oct. 12, 2019.
Monmouth dominated the matchup with 466 yards of offense compared to Georgetown’s 251, allowing only 68 yards in the second half of play and holding the Hoyas to three-of-14 on third down. The Hawks also had a season-high three sacks and seven tackles for a loss, dominating the Hoyas for a hard-earned and long-awaited win.
Monmouth running backs Owen Wright, Jayden Shirden, and Juwon Farri led the offensive effort with a combined five touchdowns, including four on the ground.
The Hawks led the first quarter 14-3 after two short runs from Wright, who increased the lead to 21-6 by the end of the second quarter after catching a 14-yard pass from quarterback Tony Muskett. The win over the Hoyas marks the second consecutive week Wright scored three touchdowns. Prior to the matchup against Georgetown, Wright led the CAA with five rushing touchdowns after scoring two against New Hampshire and three against Fordham.
Jaden Shirden, who was named CAA Football Co-Offensive Player of the Week following his record-breaking 299 rushing yards against Fordham, scored a 67-yard touchdown to give the Hawks a 28-6 lead in the third quarter. Shirden ran for 139 yards against the Hoyas, securing back-to-back 100-yard performances for the sophomore running back who also set a new career high with 18 carries.
Monmouth continued to play strong into the fourth quarter, increasing their lead with a 40-yard field goal from Vincenzo Rea and rushing touchdowns from Juwon Farri and Frankie Savino to end with a 45-6 win over Georgetown.
Muskett, a key player in the Hawks’ offensive effort, extended his touchdown passes streak to 18 games following the win over Georgetown. Muskett has a touchdown in every game of his career and now has 38 total career touchdowns, tying him for fifth in Monmouth history with Brandon Hill’s 2013-2014 season.
Defensively, Monmouth held a strong back line – the Hawks only allowed two field goals from the Hoyas and held the visiting team to 61 rushing yards. This was the first time Monmouth has held a team to less than 75 yards since a 2021 matchup against Princeton.
“We kept it personal this week. We [the defensive line] felt responsible for the Fordham loss, we didn’t get enough pressure, we didn’t make him think or move him around. It was a collective effort this week,” said senior defensive lineman Pat Hayden.
“We got the first win of the season and as I told the team, sometimes that first one is the hardest to get,” explained head coach Kevin Callahan. “Today I thought we played a fairly dominant second half and really sealed the game. On the defensive side we came up with two turnovers and gave the ball to the offense who was able to turn those possessions into scores.”
The Hawks have three Patriot League opponents on their 2022 schedule. After a tough 52-49 loss against Fordham and a runaway victory over Georgetown, Monmouth will face Lehigh as the team’s last PL matchup on Saturday, Oct. 1.