Dukes Derail Robert Morris, 34-20
Oct. 3, 2009
PITTSBURGH - Duquesne saw a 27-0 third quarter lead cut to seven, but held on to defeat fast-closing Robert Morris 34-20 at Rooney Field.
The win was the first in Northeast Conference play for the Dukes (2-3, 1-1) who ended a three-game losing streak, the loss dropped Robert Morris to 0-5 (0-2 in the NEC).
Connor Dixon completed 19-of-31 passes for 201 yards and two touchdowns for the Dukes who outgained the Colonials 408-312. Jeff Sinclair threw for 219 yards and two scores for RMU.
Larry McCoy posted his second consecutive 100-yard game with 107 yards and two touchdowns for the Dukes.
Duquesne took the opening kickoff 87 yards as Dixon completed six of nine passes, the last of which was a seven-yard TD toss to Dave Williams.
Rolf Bathold gave Robert Morris excellent field position when he picked off a Dixon pass and returned it 49 yards to the Duquesne 17. Duquesne's defense held, as RMU's Garrett Clawson, kicking into a crosswind gusting 20 to miles per hour, missed wide left on a field goal attempt from 35 yards out.
The Colonials stopped another Dukes drive early in the second quarter when Robert Williams forced a Cleo Williams fumble that was recovered by RMU's Gavin Marshall at the DU 23.
Duquesne's Willie Milhouse returned an interception 22 yards to the RMU 37 and redshirt freshman Sean Patterson, making his first career appearance, drove the Dukes to the one before Marek Lapinski put the Dukes up 14-0 on a one-yard plunge. Patterson completed an 11-yard pass and rushed twice for 23 yards on the drive.
The Dukes upped the lead to 20-0 when McCoy scored on an 11-yard run with under a minute left in the half. Joe Cangilla keyed the 77-yard drive with two catches for 43 yards.
Duquesne added another score when Dixon hit Jay Spinks with a 12-yard touchdown pass on DU's first possession of the second half. Dixon converted a 3rd-and-19 with a 24-yard run to keep the drive alive.
Robert Morris got on the board when Sinclair hit Shadrae King with a 19-yard touchdown pass to make it 27-7 with 7:09 left in the third quarter.
Sinclair added a nine-yard touchdown run after a Duquesne muffed punt gave the Colonials the ball on the Duquesne 15.
The Colonials added a third consecutive score when Sinclair found Sherrod Evers with a 53-yard bomb to make it 27-20 with 10:05 left. The score was preceded by a Duquesne personal foul that gave RMU a first down.
Duquesne answered with a 57-yard drive capped by a 13-yard McCoy run for the game's final points. Cangilla's 25-yard catch on 3rd-and-19 was the drive's big play.
DU stopped RMU on downs and Dionte Wade picked off a Sinclair pass in the final 2:43 left to seal the win.
Robert Morris tailback Myles Russ, who ran for a career-high 246 yards and two touchdowns in RMU's 34-27 win over Duquesne last season, was held to 85 yards on 21 carries.
There were a total of 22 penalties called in the game, including 13 in the second half.
Nathan Totino led the Dukes with a game-high 13 tackles. Alex DiMichele had 12 stops for RMU.
Duquesne returns to the road to face two-time defending NEC champion Albany (3-2, 2-0) at 12:00 p.m on Saturday, Oct. 10.
Scoring by Quarters