Western New England piles up 529 yards of total offense, averaging 7.2 yards per play
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (September 10, 2016) – The Western New England University football team ensured that the President's Cup would remain in Springfield for the third consecutive year with a 55-7 victory over local rival Westfield State University this afternoon in non-conference action at Golden Bear Stadium.
• Junior quarterback Anthony Service (Lake Ronkonkoma, N.Y.) led the way for the Western New England offense, completing 13-of-20 pass attempts for 214 yards with three touchdowns and one interception. Service finished with 277 yards of total offense after rushing for a game-high 63 yards (7.9 avg.) on eight carries as well.
• Freshman tight end Josh Henry (Wilbraham, Mass.) caught four passes for a game-high 94 yards in his collegiate debut, which was highlighted by a 60-yard touchdown reception in the third quarter.
• Senior linebacker Charles Venezia (New City, N.Y.) picked off Westfield State junior quarterback Shawn Brathwaite (Brooklyn, N.Y.) late in the second quarter and found the end zone with a 36-yard interception return.
• Westfield State sophomore wide receiver Cam Gallagher (Uxbridge, Mass.) accounted for the Owls' lone touchdown with a 40-yard catch in the third quarter and finished with a team-high 57 receiving yards.
• After coming up empty on the opening possession of the game, Western New England's second drive resulted in a 7-0 lead for the Golden Bears as senior running back Nick Connell (East Marion, N.Y.) capped a 13-play, 54-yard drive with a one-yard touchdown run at the 6:17 mark of the first quarter.
• The Western New England defense forced a three-and-out on Westfield State's subsequent possession, and the Golden Bear offense responded with a nine-play, 63-yard drive that culminated in a 17-yard touchdown pass from Service to senior wing Mohamad Camara (New York, N.Y.).
• Service found junior wide receiver Mark Dietrich (Cheshire, Conn.) for a two-yard score with 2:08 left in the first half, and Venezia ended Westfield State's ensuing possession after just three plays with his 36-yard interception return that gave the Golden Bears a 28-0 lead heading into the locker room.
• After the Western New England defense forced a three-and-out on Westfield State's first possession of the second half, Service connected with Henry for a 60-yard score on the first play of the Golden Bears' next drive.
• Freshmen Peter Hoff (Shelton, Conn.), Alec Coleman (Arlington, Mass.) and Jamyre Soberanis (Dorchester, Mass.) all got in on the action with second half touchdowns, while Gallagher broke up Western New England's shutout bid late in the third quarter with his 40-yard score.
• With today's victory, Western New England ties the all-time series with Westfield State at 14-14 in 28 meetings. The Golden Bears have won three straight and six of the last seven contests overall between the local rivals.
• Western New England piled up 529 yards of total offense, averaging 7.2 yards per play.
• Five different Golden Bears rushed for 40+ yards, led by Service's 63 yards on the ground. Western New England finished with 313 yards rushing on 51 carries (6.1 per rush).
• The Western New England defense, which surrendered just 220 yards of total offense to Westfield State (3.3 yards per play), was particularly tough on third down, allowing the Owls to convert on just 3 of their 18 attempts (17%).
Western New England (2-0) wraps up its non-conference slate next Saturday at Union, while Westfield State (1-1) opens MASCAC play at UMass Dartmouth.