SLU tears through UR to defend home field

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CANTON, N.Y. – Host St. Lawrence University took charge early, scoring four touchdowns in the first half and went on to a 51-19 victory over the University of Rochester in a Liberty League football game on Saturday afternoon.

The Saints improved to 4-5 overall, 2-3 in the league. They can even their records with a win at Buffalo State College next week. Rochester is 0-9 overall, 0-5 in the Liberty League. Rochester will host Hobart College next Saturday at noontime. The Yellowjackets will host their seniors before kickoff.

Saints quarterback Tyler Grochot completed 32 of 39 passes for 294 yards and six touchdowns. He was not intercepted or sacked. Joseph Viscardo caught three TD strikes. Andrew Murphy collared two, and Anthony Ferraro had one. SLU rolled up 524 yards in offense – 201 on the ground and 323 through the air.

Rochester produced 333 yards in offense. UR threw for 195 yards and rushed for 138 more. Seven receivers caught passes. Noah Shinaman (Brighton)Dan Diaz, and Tyler Tanen had three catches apiece. Diaz and Tanen caught TD passes.

UR quarterback Derek Bufano completed 13 of 26 throws for 173 yards. He was intercepted once and sacked once. Michael Hage made his first appearance of the season, completing a 22-yard pass. Bufano led Rochester in rushing, carrying the ball seven times for 62 net yards and one TD. Jason Cunningham carried 19 times for a net of 52 yards.

Defensively, Najeeb Awad had three primary tackles and seven assists. He and Caden Cole combined on a tackle for loss. Cole had eight stops (four solo)  and broke up two passes. Robert Grant had seven tackles and one TD. Devin Woodyard (Brighton) had three tackles behind the line (11 yards in losses) with one of those a six-yard sack. He also had two quarterback hurries.

Grochot threw scoring passes to Viscardo and Murphy in the first quarter, then added a second to Murphy early in the second quarter. Rochester found a bit of an offensive rhythm in the second quarter. Bufano directed a seven-play, 78-yard drive that ended with a nine-yard TD pass to Diaz to make the score 20-6. After Grochot threw his fourth touchdown, Bufano led a hurried drive (54 yards in four plays covering 29 seconds) to make the score 27-12 at the break. The key play in the drive was a 48-yard pass to Shinaman which put the ball on the Saint six. A penalty and a one-yard loss with a pass put the ball on the 22. Bufano found Tanen in the end zone for the TD.

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