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Dominant First Half Fuels Western New England’s 59-7 Win Over Anna Maria

Junior quarterback Alec Coleman accounted for 207 yards of total offense and three touchdowns in Western New England's 59-7 win over Anna Maria on Saturday. (Photo by Chris Marion)
Junior quarterback Alec Coleman accounted for 207 yards of total offense and three touchdowns in Western New England's 59-7 win over Anna Maria on Saturday. (Photo by Chris Marion)

Golden Bears rack up 393 yards on the ground

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (September 22, 2018) – A dominant first half performance fueled the Western New England University football team's 59-7 victory over Anna Maria College on Saturday afternoon in non-conference action at Golden Bear Stadium.

Top Performers
Junior quarterback Alec Coleman (Arlington, Mass.) finished with over 200 yards of total offense in less than two quarters under center, as he completed 6-of-9 pass attempts for 102 yards and one touchdown, while also rushing six times for 105 yards and two scores.

Juniors Peter Hoff (Shelton, Conn.) and Jamyre Soberanis (Dorchester, Mass.) combined for 90 yards and three scores on the ground, while junior Byron Jones (West Hartford, Conn.) led the receiving corps with three catches for 52 yards.

Defensively, sophomore linebacker Nick Parchinski (Chester, N.Y.) recorded a team-high five tackles with one sack.

For Anna Maria, freshman quarterback Aidan Nunez (Carmel, N.Y.) completed 9-of-10 passes for 65 yards, and sophomore defensive back Aiden Folster (Wappinger Falls, N.Y.) made a game-high eight stops.

Game Review
Western New England set the tone from the outset, as the Golden Bears received the opening kickoff and needed less than two minutes to drive 55 yards for the game's opening score. Hoff capped the possession with a three-yard touchdown as Western New England established an early 7-0 lead.

The AMCATs drove all the way to the WNE 22-yard line on their ensuing possession, but the drive stalled and Peter Beuttel's (Plymouth, Mass.) 30-yard field goal was blocked by sophomore Zhaire House (Greenwich, Conn.). Six plays later, Coleman found sophomore Steven Fedorchak (Guilderland, N.Y.) down the sideline for a 26-yard touchdown on a pass that went through the hands of an Anna Maria defensive back. The Golden Bears led 14-0 at the conclusion of the first quarter.

Anna Maria was again able to move the ball across midfield early in the second period, but senior Sean Stergas (Cambridge, Vt.) sacked freshman quarterback Alex Cohen (Plymouth, Mass.) on fourth and five from the WNE 38-yard line to end the possession. The Golden Bears put together a quick four-play, 59-yard drive that culminated in a 30-yard Coleman touchdown run to increase their advantage to 21-0 with 12:19 remaining in the half. 

Following another Anna Maria turnover on downs, Coleman found the end zone with a 58-yard run on the first play of Western New England's drive to increase the home team's lead to 28-0.

The Golden Bears made it 35-0 just 17 seconds later, as the AMCATs lost a fumble and Soberanis broke free for a 35-yard touchdown with 9:30 on the clock.

Anna Maria finally got on the board when freshman Antonio Snell (Brooklyn, N.Y.) returned the ensuing kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown, but the AMCATs trailed 45-7 at halftime.

Western New England tacked on a pair of second half touchdowns to extend the final margin to 59-7. Junior quarterback Brendan Smith (Seekonk, Mass.) connected with freshman wide receiver AJ Hall (Norwalk, Conn.) for an eight-yard score late in the third quarter, and junior Jack Priester (Dover, N.H.) ran for a 53-yard touchdown late in the fourth.

Notes
• Western New England outgained Anna Maria 576-195, including 393-68 on the ground.
• The Golden Bear defense limited the AMCAT offense to a 13% (2-for-15) third down conversion rate.
• Western New England picked up 27 first downs while holding Anna Maria to ten.

Up Next
Western New England (3-1) opens Commonwealth Coast Football play next Saturday at Salve Regina, while Anna Maria (0-4) returns home for its ECFC opener against Gallaudet.