Yellowjackets fall to reigning Liberty champs RPI

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TROY, N.Y. – Defending Liberty League football champion RPI took its first step to winning another crown by posting a 38-0 victory over the University of Rochester at ECAV Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Quarterback George Marinopoulos threw for 242 and four touchdowns for the Engineers. Eleven different receivers caught passes. RPI rolled up 242 yards passing and 115 on the ground. Joe Scaglione led the hosts with 40 rushing yards on 10 carries.

Rochester rushed for 94 yards. Sean Mannion (Irondequoit) led all ground-gainers with 62 net yards on 20 tries. First-year Tom Heslin ran 13 times for 47 yards. Quarterback Derek Bufano completed 12 of 27 passes for 116 yards. He was intercepted three times.

All three of the picks came on tipped passes and each led to a score. RPI drove 88 yards in seven players spread over the first and second quarters. The Engineers got the ball at their own 12 after a 44-yard punt by Ben Schwartz. For the afternoon, Schwartz punted five times for a 35.4-yard average. He placed two balls inside the 20.

The key play on the opening TD drive was a 30-yard hookup between Marinopoulos and Nick Smith. It moved the ball from the RPI 29 to the Rochester 41. Fourplays later, they connected again, this time on a24yard fade to the right corner of the end zone for the TD. Sanjay Krishna made the PAT. He was 5-5 on extra points and kicked a 31-yard field goal later in the second period.

UR got pinned at its own six on a punt later. Mannion rushed twice for nine yards. On 3rd-and-1, Bufano’s passwas tipped at the line and intercepted by Grant Tragni. On the first play after the pick, Marinopoulos threw a 21-yard score to Vinnie McDonald for a 14-0 lead.

Defensively for Rochester, Seif Awad had 11 tackles (five solo) and Caden Cole was in on 10 stops (two solo).  Adam Baghi had two pass breakups and Braydon Bush had one.

UR returns to the Brian Prince Athletic Complex next Saturday when the Yellowjackets host Union College in Edwin Fauver Stadim. Kickoff is set for noon. RPI, Union, and Ithaca are all 1-0 in the league. Hobart, Rochester, and St. Lawrence are 0-1.

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