Monmouth Hands Football 33-14 Defeat

Oct. 20, 2001


Stony Brook, N.Y. - Matt Merklinger scored two touchdowns and totaled 169 all-purpose yards as Monmouth posted a 33-14 win over Stony Brook in Northeast Conference action Saturday afternoon at Seawolves Field before a homecoming crowd of 3,676. The win improved Monmouth's record to 5-1 on the year, 4-0 in NEC action while Stony Brook falls to 1-4 overall, 1-4 in conference play.

Monmouth took advantage of three blocked punts and two interceptions to send Stony Brook to its fourth defeat of the season. The first of three blocked punts came midway through the first quarter and staked MU to a 7-0 lead. With the Seawolves pinned deep in their own territory, a bad snap allowed the Hawks' Aaron Edwards to sneak in and block the punt which was recovered by Kevin Hutchinson in the end zone and the Hawks took the early lead.

Stony Brook evened the score less than three minutes later on a 37-yard shovel pass from quarterback Scott Bard to running back Ken Lockhart and the game was even at 7-7.

On the ensuing drive, the Hawks went 44 yards on 11 plays to set up the first of Ryan Peterson's two field goals on the afternoon, a 27-yarder, which gave MU a 10-7 lead after one quarter of play. Peterson added a 30-yard field goal with 8:38 remaining before halftime to give MU a 13-7 lead at the break.

After halftime, Monmouth took control. Quarterback Bill Rankin hit Merklinger on a 65-yard touchdown strike on the third play of the second half but Stony Brook quickly responded with a seven-play 70-yard drive that ended when Bard ran in from two yards out and the Seawolves had cut MU's lead to 20-14.

That would be as close as the Seawolves would get as Tyhquan Walker added a 38-yard touchdown run later in the third and Merklinger notched his second touchdown of the afternoon on a one-yard run with 13:49 to go to close out the scoring. Merklinger totaled 88 yards on the ground and 81 through the air to pace the Monmouth offense.



Bard threw for 230 yards on 22-38 passing and Chris McGovern had six catches for 62 yards in a losing effort. Aden Smith had a game-high 15 tackles for the Seawolves.

Stony Brook is back in action next Saturday when they host Jacksonville in its first and only non-conference effort of the season. Kick-off is 12:30 p.m.