The Bridgewater State football team is progressing through the season with a winning record of 4-2 on the season including a 3-1 record in the MASCAC. The Bears are off to a two game winning streak after their recent 34-13 victory over the University of Massachusetts (UMass) Dartmouth.
The UMass Dartmouth Corsairs hosted the Bears last Friday, October 9th, at Crissy Field. These two closely matched teams battled hard against each other, however Bridgewater put in the extra work to come out on top. The Bears gathered a total of 415 offensive yards, while the Corsairs trailed behind them with 335 offensive yards.
Bridgewater dominated the rushing game collecting 263 yards on the ground. Sophomore quarterback Alex McLaughlin got the momentum started for the Bears after a 3 yard rush into the endzone making it the first touchdown of the game. McLaughlin went on to score three rushing touchdowns racking up 86 rushing yards in total.
Senior running back Carlton Williamson was also a key factor in the rushing game by leading all players with 94 rushing yards and 20 carries. Williamson had the finishing touchdown with a terrific 34 yard rush to seal the victory 34-13.
The Bears recorded one passing touchdown, a 27-yard pass by junior quarterback Danny Higgins to sophomore receiver Travis Bassett in the second quarter. The Corsairs led the Bears in passing yards with 168, while the Bears had 152 passing yards in total. Nonetheless, the power of Bridgewater’s rushing game led the team to outscore UMass Dartmouth.
The Bridgewater offense certainly had some help on the other side. The Bear’s defense had a tremendous game holding the strong UMass Dartmouth offense to only two touchdowns, the lowest scoring game the Corsairs had throughout the season.
Two of the many contributors to the imposing defense are sophomore safety Cameron Williamson and senior linebacker Nicholas Salois. These skilled defenders recorded a nine tackles combined with Williamson receiving four and Salois with five. Williamson also intercepted a Corsair toss and ran it back for a solid 34 yards.
Defensive coordinator Joseph Verria discussed the motivation and drive that his defense has this year.
“Defensively we are not very big, but we have a lot of fast kids flying to the football,” said Coach Verria. “Our pursuit to the football has improved 100%, so if someone misses a tackle there are three or four more kids right there to clean up. The kids are having a lot of fun playing together and it shows on the field.”
Coach Verria, who is in his 28th season as a key member of the Bear’s football program, further discussed how the team is going to try to keep the streak going with their next game against Plymouth State University.
“It feels great to get back to back wins for the first time this year but we have to continue to stay focused on our next opponent,” said Coach Verria “ Plymouth State will be a challenge because they run an offense that nobody else runs. We will need to be very disciplined and play assignment football for the entire game if we expect to win.”
The Plymouth State Panthers are hosting the Bears at Currier Memorial Field in Plymouth, N.H. on Saturday, Oct. 17 at 1:00 p.m. The Bears hope to further the winning streak to three games straight in this next upcoming game.
Andrew Higginbottom is a Staff Writer for The Comment.