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CAA Football Spring Game Recaps — April 30

May 1, 2011, 2:35 PM EDT

Black Bears Play Seventh Annual Jeff Cole Spring Scrimmage recap (navigate back to Maine football page for video highlights and interviews)

ORONO, Maine — The University of Maine football team held the seventh annual Jeff Cole Spring Scrimmage on Saturday morning. The Black Bears ran through several plays as they took some precautionary measures and limited tackling to just contact.

Among the highlights from the scrimmage: tight ends Derek Buttles and Justin Perillo each making a couple grabs; freshman running back David Hood making a nice run-after-catch; and the Black Bears defensive line that notched a couple of sacks.

Among the festivities around the game were: face painting, ‘Dress Like a Black Bear,’ chances to win prizes, UMaine cheerleaders and the Brice-Cowell Musket.

The coaching staff also gave out awards from the 2010 season at the awards banquet last night, among the winners: Buttles, who won the Offensive Player of the Year and Captain’s Award; Chris Howley, who won the Offensive Lineman of the Year Award; Jerron McMillian, who won the Defensive Player of the Year Award; Kevin Phanor, who won the Defensive Lineman of the Year Award; Matt Barber, who won the Senior Student-Athlete Achievement Award; Levi Ervin and Conor Keating who won the Spirit/Dedication Awards; Michael Cole and Joe Hook, who won the Rookie of the Year Awards; Jeremy Kelley, who won the Special Teams Player of the Year Award; Erwin Roach and Hood, who won the Scout Team Player of the Year Awards; Donte Dennis, who won the Most Valuable Player Award and Dominic Cusano and Ryan McCrossan, who also earned Captain’s Awards.

Defense Outlasts Offense, 44-42, In Massachusetts Spring Game recap, including photo gallery

AMHERST, Mass. – The defense held on for a 44-42 win over the defense in the annual UMass Football Spring Game at McGuirk Stadium on a sun-splashed Saturday. Cornerback Mike Lee broke up a pass intended for Jesse Julmiste to secure the win for the defenders. Points were awarded throughout the session for touchdowns, turnovers, defensive stops, long plays and various other situations.

Transfer quarterback Kellen Pagel started with the first team and was involved in three touchdowns in three different fashions. He threw for 93 yards on 5-of-9 and a 25-yard touchdown pass to Tom Gilson. He also hauled in a 25-yard reception from receiver Julian Talley for the highlight play of the day on a flea-flicker for the final touchdown of the game. Pagel opened the scoring with a 1-yard touchdown plunge over center.

Redshirt-freshman quarterback Brandon Hill threw for 37 yards on 3-of-6. Ian Shultis was 2-of-2 for 20 yards while Raymond Pendagast was 1-of-2 for 11 yards.

On the ground Jonathan Hernandez set up Pagel’s 1-yard run with a 22-yard dash, his only run of the game. Cedric Gonnet returned to the team with seven carries for 25 yards and Alan Williams gained 14 yards on five totes.

In addition to his 25-yard pass to Pagel, Talley had three catches for 44 yards. Gilson had 49 yards on two catches including his TD catch. James Lizotte (17 yards), Chase Danska (14 yards), Thad McCummings (13 yards), Jacob Scott (11 yards), Gonnet (9 yards) and Matt Campbell (3 yards) all had one reception.

On the defense, some of the stars included Christian Birt and Ryan Carter, who each had an interception. Tom Brandt had a 1 1/2 sacks, Carlito Weaver and Stanley Andre each also had sacks.

Igor Garcia and Brendon Levengood shared the kicking duties and each made several field goals in that drill. Garcia converted 32 and 34-yard field goals for scores in the game portion.

Scoring Plays
Touchdown: Kellen Pagel 1-yard rush
Field Goal: Igor Garcia 32-yard field goal
Field Goal: Igor Garcia 34-yard field goal
Touchdown: Tom Gilson 25-yard reception from Kellen Pagel
Touchdown: Kellen Pagel 25-yard reception from Julian Talley

Offensive Statistics
Passing: Kellen Pagel 5-9-93 TD, Brandon Hill 3-6-37, Ian Shultis 2-2-20, Raymond Pendagast 1-2-11, Julian Talley 1-1-25 TD, Matt Quinn 0-1-0

Rushing: Cedric Gonnet 7-25, Jonathan Hernandez 1-22, Alan Williams 1-14, Chris Burns 2-10, Raymond Pendagast 1-9, James Lizotte 1-5, Ian Shultis 2-4, Kellen Pagel 2-minus 2 TD

Receiving: Julian Talley 3-44, Tom Gilson 2-49 TD, Kellen Pagel 1-25 TD, James Lizotte 1-17, Chase Danska 1-14, Thad McCummings 1-13, Jacob Scott 1-11, Cedric Gonnet 1-9, Matt Campbell 1-3

Blue Defeats White 16-7 In Annual Rhode Island Spring Game recap including statistics, a photo gallery and more video highlights

KINGSTON, R.I. – Sophomore linebacker Dave Zocco picked off a pair of passes and returned one for a touchdown as the Blue Team defeated the White Team 16-7 in the annual Blue-White Game at Meade Stadium.

In two career spring games, Zocco has picked off four passes and returned two to for touchdowns.

The New Hampshire native’s first interception came in the third quarter as he returned it 55 yards the other way for a touchdown, which gave the Blue Team a 10-7 lead. The second interception came in the fourth quarter and sealed the Blue’s victory.

Fellow sophomore Ali Muhammad also chipped in for the Blue Team defensively as he recorded a team-best three sacks and four tackles for loss.

Offensively for the Blue Team, sophomore quarterback Bob Bentsen led the way with 106 yards receiving and one touchdown pass.

The White Team scored on its opening drive of the game and took a 7-0 lead. Senior quarterback Steve Probst hit fellow senior Anthony Baskerville for a 10-yard touchdown pass, which concluded a six-play 65-yard drive.

Probst was a perfect 5-for-5 on the drive, completing passes to five different receivers. The drive was highlighted by a 29-yard completion to junior tight end Joe Migliarese.

Following the score, the Blue would hold the White scoreless for the remainder of the game. The Blue Team got on the board in the first quarter thanks to a 32-yard field goal by senior kicker Louis Feinstein.

The Blue took the lead for good in the third quarter following Zocco’s interception return for touchdown. In the fourth quarter, the Blue increased its lead to 16-7 following a 12 play, 68-yard drive capped by a 16-yard pass from Bensten to junior wide receiver Brandford Sowah.

Offensively for the White, Probst finished with a game-high 216 yards passing (21-of-37) and one touchdown through the air. Junior wide receiver Billy Morgan caught nine passes for a game-high 94 yards receiving.

The Rams open up their 2011 season on Sept 10 as they head to Syracuse to face the Orange.

Gold Team Edges Black Team In Tiger Bowl, 21-16 recap including stats and post game reactions

Towson’s Peter Athens (credit: PJ Dunn)

TOWSON, Md. – Playing in his first competitive game in 18 months, quarterback Peter Athens completed 11 of 22 passes for 202 yards and three touchdowns as the Gold Team edged the Black Team, 21-16, in a very competitive Tiger Bowl at Johnny Unitas® Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Athens, who started six games as a first-year freshman in 2009, suffered an ACL injury midway through the season. He missed the balance of the 2009 season and the entire 2010 campaign while recovering.

Athens also caught a 32-yard pass on a trick play when wide receiver Tom Ryan shifted to quarterback.

The offenses started very slowly in the Tiger Bowl as defensive end Ben Chroniger had two sacks in a scoreless first quarter. D.J. Soven, who punted for both teams, was called upon to punt eight times in the first quarter.

“Both teams started very slowly on offense,” said Towson Coach Rob Ambrose.  “I was letting some of our younger coaches call plays and many of them were ‘vanilla.’ But, after a while, I started sending some plays into the game and the offenses started moving.”

On the second play of the second quarter, Athens fired a 63-yard touchdown pass down the middle to Spencer Wilkins, giving the Gold team a 6-0 lead. Soven’s conversion gave the Gold a 7-0 advantage.

Moments later, Brian Potts completed a short pass to Sherman Greene, who fumbled at the Black team 32-yard line. Defensive back Eric Schuster, who forced the fumble, recovered to give the ball back to the Gold Team.

Five plays later, Athens fired an 18-yard touchdown pass to Alex Blake. Soven’s conversion kick made it 14-0.

The Gold Team maintained its lead until the final minute of the first half. In the final minute, Potts directed a 45-yard, five-play drive which resulted in a touchdown on the final play of the first half. Running back Terrance West scored the tying TD on a five yard run to cut the deficit to 14-7.

In the third quarter, a 30-yard interception return by cornerback Nick Oates set up a 27-yard field goal by Soven that pulled the Black Team to within 14-10.

But, Athens directed a 70-yard, eight play drive that resulted in a two-yard TD run by Ryan McLean to give the Black team a 21-10 lead. Athens also played wide receiver on the drive as he made a diving, one-handed catch at the two-yard line off a pass from Ryan on a trick play.

With the Gold Team owning a 21-10 lead in the fourth quarter, Athens switched sides and played quarterback for the Black Team. He directed a 61-yard, six-play drive that resulted in a 17-yard touchdown pass to Arione Scott. The Black Team tried for the two-point conversion but the attempt failed when West was stopped at the line of scrimmage.

While Athens passed for 202 yards in the Tiger Bowl, Potts completed 11 of 21 passes for 157 yards. Freshman quarterback Jarred Evans completed three of five passes for 67 yards.

Blake was the Tigers’ top receiver with five catches for 71 yards and a touchdown while Wilkins had three receptions for 96 yards and a TD. Greene caught three passes for 76 yards while Scott had two catches for 53 yards and a touchdown.

West was clearly the Tigers’ top rusher in the Tiger Bowl. A product of Northwestern High School in Baltimore, he ran for 89 yards on 15 carries and scored a touchdown.

“Terrance West really helped himself in the Tiger Bowl,” said Coach Ambrose. “Early in the spring, he was really running well. Then, he got a little nicked up. During the last two scrimmages, he was soft as butter.

“To his credit, he responded to the challenge,” he added. “He ran very hard today and he showed me something.”

Linebacker Trevor Walker was the leading tackler for the Gold Team. He made eight tackles and forced a fumble. Linebacker Drew Cheripko added six tackles while defensive end Chroniger made five tackles, including three sacks.

“Ben Chroniger is too small and too short,” says Ambrose. “But, he just loves to play football and he keeps getting better.”

Defensive end Romale Tucker led the Black Team with eight tackles, including a sack. Defensive tackle Rob Osborne added six tackles and had a sack while linebacker Kyle Polk made five tackles and also had a sack.

“Our defense played very solid,” added Ambrose. “They’ve done well all spring. I am pleased with the way they are playing smarter and playing physical. We want to become a cerebral team and a fast team on defense and we are moving towards that goal.”

With the Tiger Bowl, the Tigers’ spring practice season has been completed.

The Tigers open their 2011 season on September 3 against Morgan State in Unitas Stadium.