ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The University at Albany football team remained undefeated at home on Saturday afternoon, moving to 3-1 in CAA play after taking down conference foe Rhode Island by a score of 35-10. The win snapped a three-game skid the Great Danes had against the Rams, dating back to the 2021 spring season.
Key Stat Lines
- Reese Poffenbarger had another great outing in the pocket. The quarterback passed for 324 yards and tossed four TDs, the fifth time he has done so in his career.
- Julian Hicks continued his hot streak, bringing in a career-high 188 yards with two TDs. All of his stats came in the first half, making the feat even more impressive. He was on the receiving end of an 85-yard play, turning on the Jets and bringing the ball to the house late in the second quarter.
- Brevin Easton also had a strong outing, bringing in two passes for 88 yards. His day was highlighted by an 83-yard reception right before the half.
- Both Griffin Woodell and Faysal Aden broke the 100-yard mark. Aden finished with 100 yards even, while Woodell ran for 115 yards and a TD.
- Defensively, Dylan Kelly led the team with 10 tackles and an INT. He also added a TFL.
- AJ Simon recorded another sack, bringing his season total up to eight.
- The defense as a unit held URI to just 311 yards of total offense.
Head Coach Greg Gattuso: “Just a big win, I’m really happy with how we played. Reese [Poffenbarger] is really hitting his stride, and he played spectacularly in the first half. Just really happy with the effort… We played really well, I’m really happy, against a good team.”
How it Happened:
- The Rams won the toss and deferred to the second half, giving the Great Danes the ball to start the game.
- UAlbany didn’t waste much time, driving 75 yards on seven plays for the score. Griffin Woodell ran the ball in from two yards out after ripping off a huge 44-yard run the play prior to getting into the red zone.
- After holding URI to a punt, the offense went right back to work – this time marching 72 yards on eight plays to take a 14-0 lead. Reese Poffenbarger found Julian Hicks in the back corner of the end zone from 10 yards out. The reception was Hicks’ fifth TD of the season.
- URI recorded the first turnover of the game early into the second quarter when linebacker AJ Pena picked off an attempted screen pass in the red zone, taking it back to midfield for the Rams. The turnover led to points for the visiting team, with Ty Groff hitting a 26-yard field goal to bring the score to 14-3 with 9:53 remaining.
- The UAlbany offense was able to respond with another solid drive, getting to within field goal range with 7:27 on the clock. The 42-yard attempt was no good however, with John Opalko’s kick bouncing off the bottom post just inches short to keep the score 14-3.
- With 1:51 remaining in the first half, Poffenbarger launched one deep down the sideline to Hicks, who was able to bring it in and turn on the afterburners for an 85-yard score. The TD brought the score to 21-3 following the four-play, 97-yard drive.
- After the UAlbany defense held URI to a three-and-out, Poffenbarger this time found Brevin Easton for an 83-yard score to make it 28-3 with just 35 seconds remaining in the half. The score was once again the fourth play of the drive, which in total spanned 86 yards.
- Brad Igweike recorded his first INT of the season as time expired in the second quarter, picking off URI’s Kassim Hill in the end zone on a Hail Mary.
- The Great Danes totaled 426 yards of total offense in the first half. The Rams were held to just 138.
- On URI’s first offense drive, the Rams drove the ball deep into UAlbany territory but eventually turned the ball over on downs after going for it on fourth and goal from the 20-yard line.
- UAlbany pushed the score to 35-3 two minutes into the fourth quarter when Poffenbarger found tight end Ian Renninger in the end zone on a four-yard strike. The TD was Renninger’s first of the year, capping a 10-play 62-yard drive.
- The Rams scored their first TD of the game with 8:35 remaining in the game to make it 35-10. Jaden Griffin ran it in from six yards out to complete the drive.
- URI made it deep into UAlbany territory with under five minutes remaining in the game but came up empty on another turnover on downs. Aamie Hall had a PBU in the end zone to stall the drive on fourth down.
- Dylan Kelly recorded an INT on URI’s final possession, his second of the season.
Next: The Great Danes travel to CAA foe Maine next Saturday for a 1:00 matchup with the Black Bears.