Towson Ground Attack Downs Rams in Season Finale

Towson Ground Attack Downs Rams in Season Finale

How it Happened
Towson wore down Rhode Island with its ground attack en route to a 38-21 victory in the season finale Saturday.

Led by junior Darius Victor's 199 rushing yards, Towson (7-4, 5-3 CAA Football) piled up 284 yards on the ground as a team. Victor also rushed for two touchdowns, while Grayson Boyce added 49 yards and a touchdown of his own.

As has been the case often this season, Rhode Island (1-10, 1-7 CAA Football) started out strong. The Rams took advantage of the game's first turnover, as Tim Wienclaw intercepted a pass midway through the first quarter, setting up first-and-10 at the Towson 35-yard line. Three plays later, Wesley McKoy hit Khayri Denny over the middle for a 30-yard touchdown pass, putting the Rams up 7-0 with 6:02 left in the first.

Towson came right back. Darius Victor broke a career-long 60-yard run to set up first-and-goal at the Rhody 7. Another Victor carry brought the ball to the 1-yard line before Grayson Boyce plunged in on second-and-goal to tie the game 7-7 just 1:44 after Rhody's touchdown.

The Tigers pulled ahead just before the close of the opening quarter when Victor ran it in from 5 yards out. The play capped a three-play, 52-yard drive for Towson.

Rhode Island responded with 14 unanswered points in the second quarter. McKoy hit Phadrae White with a 9-yard touchdown just 1:03 into the second quarter. On its next possession, Rhody got a 66-yard screen pass from McKoy to Harold Cooper to set up a first-and-goal at the 2-yard line. Two plays later, McKoy took the keeper in from a yard out to put the Rams up, 21-14. Towson tied it up again at 4:07 of the second quarter on Victor's second rushing touchdown of the day.

A pair of third quarter touchdown passes by Heath Dahlgren – one each to Emmanuel Holder and Andre Dessenberg – gave Towson a 35-21 lead heading into the fourth quarter. Rhode Island had a couple opportunities in the second half, but was unable to add any points.

Inside the Box Score

  • Harold Cooper finished the season with 1,582 all-purpose yards, the fifth highest single-season total in program history. Only Cal Whitfield (1,657, 1982), James Jenkins (1,689, 1998), Cy Butler (1,801, 1994), Brian Forster (1,915, 1985) and  Wendall Williams (1,964, 2003) ever had more.
  • With his first tackle of the day, Tim Wienclaw recorded the 300th tackle of his career, becoming the sixth player in team history to reach the milestone. Wienclaw finished his career with 306 stops, joining Matt Hanson (401, 2007-10), Paul Picciotti (388, 1998-01), Lance Small (380, 1998-01), Tom Marhefka (339, 1975-78) and LaJhon Jones (320, 1994-97) in the 300 club.
  • Wienclaw also had his second interception of the season, which led to seven points for the Rams.
  • Freshman Wesley McKoy threw for a career-high 207 yards and two touchdowns. It was the first time in 17 games Rhode Island had a quarterback throw two touchdown passes in one game. McKoy also had his first career rushing touchdown.
  • Senior Connor Caponegro set a career-high with 12 tackles in his final game for the Rams. He had 1.5 tackles for loss.
  • Freshman Justin Hogan was active once again at linebacker, making 12 tackles for the second straight week. In his first two career starts, Hogan had 24 tackles combined. 
  • Sophomore Mike Ezirike had a career-high nine tackles, including 3.5 tackles for loss.
  • Freshman Khayri Denny led the Rams with six catches for 76 yards and a touchdown. It was his third touchdown of the season.
  • Freshman Marven Beauvais caught one pass for 7 yards. He was the lone player on the team to catch at least one pass in every game this season.
  • Senior captain Tim Wienclaw was the team's anchor bearer, while senior defensive back Dunston Payne served as the game captain.
  • Eight players started every game this season for the Rams. They were safety Tim Wienclaw, defensive tackle Mike Ezirike, left tackle Tyler Catalina, left guard Michael Gilbert, center Kevin Gallogly, right tackle Dave Steinmetz, and tight ends Charlie McKeeman and Nathan Holmes.
  • Attendance for the game was 5128.

Stat of the Game
306 – Senior captain Tim Wienclaw finished his career with 306 tackles, which ranks sixth in Rhode Island history.