The sprint football team has been riding an upwards learning curve lately, and will look to continue this trend when it faces Princeton (0-3, 0-1 CSFL) tonight at Schoellkopf Field. After losing to Navy (4-0, 1-0 CSFL), 41-0, on Sept. 23, the Red (1-3, 0-1 CSFL) rebounded last weekend, shutting out the Midshipmen for three quarters before Michael Molloy returned a blocked punt 42 yards to push Navy to a 7-0 victory.
“I was extremely proud of our team against Navy,” said head coach Terry Cullen. “I’m not disappointed by the result, really; we had a couple of chances to win but it just didn’t happen. It was a terrific ballgame.”
According to Cullen, a key factor in the Red’s fortunes tonight will be its offensive unit. With new starters at every position on the offensive line, the unit has improved as the year has progressed, but the work is certainly not finished. The Red’s opponents have gained more rushing yards than the Red in all but one contest this year.
“Our offensive line has really improved throughout the year,” Cullen said. “We really need to establish a better running game this week, and start controlling the clock better to give our defense a breather.”
The defense has been a strong unit all year for the Red. This past week against Navy, the Red limited the Midshipmen to only 10 yards of offense in the air after allowing 329 yards in the first meeting. The defense has been led by senior co-captains Amos Smith and Larue Robinson, as well as junior Jason Zittel. Zittel returned a fumble for a touchdown that sparked a 32-19 victory at Princeton last year. Senior receiver Jon Amoona amassed 133 yards against Princeton last year, while junior running back Mike Fullowan rushed for 133 yards.
“The defense has been outstanding all year,” Cullen said. “Our captains have been great and I’ve really enjoyed working with this team all year.”
Princeton has lost all of its games this year, its most recent against Army in a 45-0 shutout. Army gained 345 rushing yards in the contest and the Tigers have not even scored a point all season. The Tigers field a young and relatively inexperienced team, and have been outscored in three contests by a combined margin of 164-0.
“Princeton has some very good players,” Cullen said. “They are a young team and they have had trouble defending the forward pass, as well as stopping the run. We hope to get back to business this week and continue our solid play from the Navy game.”
Archived article by Josh Fox
Sun Staff Writer