New Hampshire Football Report

Defense carries Plymouth State

 PLYMOUTH  – Senior David Hamilton (West Deptford, N.J.) rushed 16 times for 114 yards and classmate Matt Shea (Atkinson, N.H.) made a game-saving play late in the fourth quarter as Plymouth State University held off Massachusetts Maritime Academy, 7-3, in a Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) football game at Currier Field on Senior Day on Saturday afternoon.

            In a game where scoring was at a minimum, the Buccaneers were driving late in the fourth quarter. On a fourth-and-six play with just over a minute to play, Mass. Maritime quarterback Matt Long (Weymouth, Mass.) lofted a pass to senior Leo Munafo (Wrentham, Mass.) 6 yards deep in the end zone, but Shea broke and was able to push Munafo out of bounds to preserve the win.

            Plymouth State improved to 6-2 and 4-2 in the MASCAC, while Mass. Maritime dips to 5-2 and 3-2 in league play.

          How it Happened.

  • After a scoreless first quarter, Plymouth State went ahead when junior Cooper Gorski (Concord, N.H.) hauled in a 5-yard pass from sophomore Brett Lavanchy (Walpole, Mass.) to cap a nine-play, 55-yard drive. Hamilton ripped off a 19 yard gain to set up the score.
  • The Buccaneers got a 22-yard rush from Long on the next possession, but the MMA offense stalled and turned the ball over on downs at the Plymouth State 40-yard line.
  • Mass. Maritime broke through just before the half ended. The Buccaneers drove to the PSU 9-yard line and junior George Lampros (Bridgewater, Mass.) kicked a 26-yard field goal with no time left on the clock to make it 7-3.
  • Neither offense was able to move the ball much to start the second half, until Hamilton busted through the gut for a 44-yard gain with less than six minutes remaining in the third quarter. MMA took over on downs, though, after stopping the Panthers short on a fourth-and-seven.
  • Mass. Maritime followed with a good drive that went into the fourth quarter, pushing the ball down field to the PSU 17, but Long’s pass on fourth-and-six fell incomplete.
  • Plymouth State got good field position after freshman Joey Cassella (North Yarmouth, Maine) returned a punt 11 yards and the Buccaneers were tagged with a 15-yard face mask penalty to give PSU the ball on its own 49-yard line. The Mass. Maritime defense held strong, though, and PSU was forced punt.
  • The Buccaneers took over at their own 30-yard line after a kick catching interference penalty to set up their final drive. Long connected with senior Will Bennett (Sandwich, Mass.) for 25 yards, and hit Munafo for another 14 yard gain. On fourth-and-6 with just over a minute to play, Long found Munafo along the right sideline in the end zone, but Shea made the game-saving play to push him out before he could land in bounds.

            Inside the Numbers:

  • Lavanchy finished 7-of-14 for 72 yards and a touchdown for the Panthers, while Long went 18-of-36 for 159 yards.
  • Hamilton racked up 114 yards on the ground, while senior Nick Lancia (Bedford, N.Y.) added 74 yards rushing.
  • Long was the Buccaneers’ leading rusher with 83 yards on 24 attempts.
  • Junior Max Osgood (Nashua, N.H.) led the Panthers with four catches and 66 yards.
  • Bennett pulled in a game-high five catches and led MMA with 49 receiving yards.
  • Shea notched a game-high 11 tackles, including seven solo, while sophomore Jaquan Seme (Scarborough, Maine) broke up three passes.
  • Junior Colin McCabe (Dartmouth, Mass.) had two of the Buccaneers’ three sacks.
  • The game featured the top two scoring defenses in the MASCAC. PSU entered allowing 14.3 points per game, while MMA gave up 15.5.

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