NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Saint Anselm College football team trailed by only seven points at halftime, but the regionally-ranked Chargers from the University of New Haven pulled away in the third quarter to ultimately capture a 49-21 victory on Saturday.
The Hawks fall to 1-7 on the year with a matching Northeast-10 Conference record. New Haven, ranked second in the most recent NCAA Division II Super Region One poll, moves to 8-1 overall and to 8-0 against league opponents.
Joe Caico reeled in a five-yard pass from New Haven quarterback Ajee Patterson only 5:01 into the contest, creating a 7-0 lead for the hosts. The lead would swell to 14-0 following a Ryan McCarthy one-yard rushing touchdown – Michael Staleny tacked on the extra point for New Haven on both scores.
The Hawks would not exit the first half without a fight as sophomore Ryan Bredin (Northampton, Mass.) hauled in a 25-yard touchdown pass, the first of his career, from Saint Anselm signal-caller Eric Fairweather (Londonderry, N.H) with 5:42 to go in the first half.
Despite a New Haven touchdown only minutes later, the reigning NE10 Rookie of the Week, freshman Christian Matthews-Byrd (Saddle Brook, N.J.), ran home a nine-yard touchdown with 30 seconds left in the second quarter to cut the halftime lead for the Chargers to seven points, 21-14.
The Hawks offense sputtered in the third quarter with two punts and a turnover on downs. New Haven was able to take full advantage, scoring three touchdowns on their three possessions in the third quarter to build a 42-14 lead. Jonathan Badyna and Caico hauled in passes of 22 yards or longer for scores while Nyshere Woodson ran home a 14-yard touchdown as time expired in the third.
Fairweather added a one-yard rushing touchdown with 8:57 to go in the contest, capping an eight-play, 64-yard drive in the fourth quarter. Woodson would immediately answer for the hosts with an insurance touchdown, a 58-yard run, to conclude a three-play drive to put the game out of reach with 7:01 to go.
Saint Anselm was a combined 4-for-16 on third and fourth down while New Haven was able to convert nine of its 18 chances in similar situations. The Chargers also picked up 479 yards of total offense, limiting the Hawks to only 392.
Fairweather finished 16-for-31 through the air, throwing for 219 yards and one touchdown. Senior Kyle Hill (Upper Marlboro, Md.) had four catches for 61 yards with senior Brian Zec (Duxbury, Mass.) concluding his day with three catches for 46 yards. Matthews-Byrd had 17 carries for 70 yards, leading the Saint Anselm ground game.
Patterson finished the day with 14 completed passes on 22 throws, heaving four touchdowns and finishing with 185 yards through the air.
Sophomore Ryan Sullivan (Stoughton, Mass.) led Saint Anselm with 12 tackles. Junior CJ Miller (Clinton, Md.) racked up five solo tackles en route to an eight-tackle performance on the day. McPrecia Remy led New Haven with eight tackles.
The Hawks host Pace on Saturday, Nov. 10 on Senior Day at 1 p.m.