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RPI rolls over Buffalo State 44-14

LJ LaFiura

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TROY — The RPI Engineers entered the Eastern Campus Athletic Village to close out an undefeated non-conference schedule. They did so beating the Buffalo State Bengals 44-14

Rensselaer started showing their power early in their first drive. Started Nick Cella and continued by Joe Scaglione, the RPI running backs flew between the tackles and down the field. They accrued forty-eight yards in nine plays. This quick a ground attack put Buffalo State on their heels just in time for quarterback George Marinopoulos to connect with his senior receiver Danny Calabro. Calabro broke multiple lack luster tackles and getting to the end zone after traveling nineteen yards. This pattern continued in the next drive when Marinopoulos hit Nick Smith on a slant route that went forty-four yards. RPI settled for a field goal, putting the Engineers up ten at the end of the quarter.

RPI put twenty points up on three scores in the second quarter. The first of these was on the first drive when senior Rob Law hit pay dirt after running thirteen yards. On the next play, Nick Cella found separated himself from the pack and never looked back, breaking off a sixty-five yard touchdown run. Then after forcing a turnover, George Marinopoulos hit another receiver in Keaton Ackermann for another Rensselaer touchdown.

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RPI had a big loss going into this game with their graduate captain Sean Egan being sidelined for the next two weeks after breaking his arm. They rose above this though, dominating the Bengals from the line of scrimmage. The only score of the half for Buffalo State came in the second quarter when quarterback Kevin Torillo put a jump ball into the end zone that junior receiver Jordan Evert came down with. Buffalo State finished the half with one hundred six passing yards, an interception, and only forty-five rushing yards.

RPI’s coach, Ralph Isernia said, “We have a lot of confidence with those guys in the secondary. We’ve got seven seniors including Sean (Egan) that are playing in the secondary for us. So we feel that we can put guys in there and it doesn’t matter what position they play. So it’s a luxury to have that many guys who can play at a high level.”

RPI shut the door on Buffalo State early in the second half. Following a successful first down rush by Nick Cella, Joe Scaglione broke off a forty-one yard run down to the Buffalo State two yard line. On the ensuing play Scaglione punched the ball in for his first score of the night.

In the fourth quarter, Buffalo State continued to drive down field until Tony Maple hooked up with Jordan Evert for his second score of the night. Once RPI got the ball back they placed it in the hands of their senior back J.T. Kelly. Kelly ran for sixty-seven yards and one goal line touchdown, the first of his collegiate career. RPI ran the game out and finished their win 44-14.

RPI will have their bye week next week and then go out to see Ithica on October 6th. In the preseason coaches poll, RPI and Ithica tied for the Liberty League title at twenty-three points.

Coach Isernia ,”We want to rest without rust. And we also want to make sure we get guys health going into not only this game, but for the Liberty League schedule.

LJ LaFiura is a general assignment sports reporter at the upstate Courier. A Fort Edward native, he attends Saratoga Central Catholic High School.