Norwich, Castleton open on the Road - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Norwich, Castleton open on the Road

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TROY, N.Y.- Junior running back Al Georgio ran for 26 yards on the Cadets lone scoring play of the afternoon as the Norwich University football team dropped a 20-7 loss to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) in non-conference action at RPI's East Campus Stadium on Saturday afternoon. The game marked the season opener for both teams.

RPI's senior quarterback Jessie Maynard, a former Fair Haven Slater, came off the bench to lead the Engineers through two scoring plays. Maynard entered the game in the second quarter following an injury to the starter and threw a 61-yard scoring strike in the third quarter and sealed the victory with a 91-yard run up the middle late in the fourth quarter in what was the first significant game action of his career. He finished with 89 yards passing (5-for-14; 1 INT) and 125 yards on the ground (25 carries).

The Cadets took the lead in the second quarter when Georgio plunged in from two yards out with 1:20 to go in the half.  Georgio ran for 26 yards on six carries on Norwich's scoring drive, but the highlight of the series was a 37-yard burst up the middle on a fourth and one play from senior running back Mike Cavanaugh. That jaunt brought the ball to the eight yard line and Georgio finished things from there.

The score remained 7-6 until 2:28 was left in the third quarter, when RPI sophomore Pat Hogan caught a short pass from Maynard while cutting across the middle and broke through the defense and down the right sideline for a 61-yard touchdown. Andrew Franks added the extra point for a 13-7 lead.

After the Engineers' defense held the Cadets out of the end zone from inside the 10-yard line with under two minutes to play, Maynard ran a quarterback keeper, running through the middle of the defense and down the right hash marks for the long touchdown run. Franks added the extra point for the final score of 20-7.

Norwich returns to action next Saturday, Sept. 14 as the team host's St. Lawrence University at 1:30 p.m. The game will mark the grand re-opening for Sabine Field, which recently saw a 10-month, $6 million renovation.

Courtesy: Norwich Athletics

PLYMOUTH, N.H.- Castleton needed a defensive stop in the final minute of the game to pull out a 35-31 victory over Plymouth State in the non-conference football season opener for both schools. 

Castleton used a strong aerial attack to take a 14-0 lead just six minutes into the game, but PSU responded with 28 unanswered points over the next two quarters, taking a 28-14 lead by utilizing a strong running game and capitalizing on a first-quarter on-side kick. 

Castleton came back to tie the game at 28-all by the end of the third quarter on the arm of Busharis, who was making his first career start. 

Castleton senior wide receivers Brandon Boyle from Springfield and Rutland's Mark Comstock each had big days against the Panther defense; Comstock caught eight passes for 164 yards and a touchdown while Boyle also hauled in eight passes for 156 yards and a score. The 463 receiving yards by Busharis is the second most in program history.            

Castleton scored on its first two possessions. LaCount ran one into the end zone from eight yards out after a 34-yard pass play from Busharis to Boyle set up the score.  Then Boyle found the end zone on a 49-yard pass play from Busharis to put the visitors ahead 14-0 just 6:21 into the game. 

Senior linebacker Mick Wong led the Spartan defense with 13 tackles (11 solo) and a sack, while classmate Andrew Pursell made 11 stops. Sophomore Jay Morgan was a force inside with nine tackles and 1.5 sacks. 

Castleton hosts Endicott College in its home opener next Saturday at 1:00 p.m. 

Courtesy: Castleton Athletic Department 


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