Rowan football team lost their fifth game of the season to Salisbury University 24-7 on Saturday afternoon.
The Profs went into the game looking for their first win of the season but knew they would have a tough challenge in front of them with Salisbury, who came into the week ranked no. 13 in the country.
Salisbury runs a triple option offense, similar to the Springfield University offense that ran for 495-yards against Rowan just a few weeks ago. Rowan played Springfield earlier in the season with the intent of preparing their defense for Salisbury’s triple option and it was a move that, for the most part, appeared to have paid off.
Rowan held Salisbury to 24 points, seven of which came late in the fourth quarter when the game was all but over. The defense’s performance is the most positive takeaway for Head Coach Jay Accorsi.
“[The defense] kept us in the game all the way through and just all the work that they did, simplifying some things, really going back to basics and working on defending blocks and tackling and decreasing spaces. I thought, defensively, no question, huge improvement, and jump,” Accorsi said.
The defense was able to keep the game within two possessions until the last 30 seconds of the game. The defense also forced and recovered a fumble with 8:14 remaining in the third quarter that set the offense up on Salisbury’s 36-yard line. The offense was able to capitalize on the turnover and score a touchdown but, unfortunately for the Profs, those were their only points of the day.
It was the first time this season the offense failed to score double digits and the performance was partly a product of self-inflicted wounds, Accorsi explained.
“Offensively, we just seemed to get in our own way. And again, I know the quarterback is always going to get, you know, the blame but, it’s not just always the quarterback. There’s other things that go with it,” Accorsi said. “As coaches, we’ve got to keep looking at what we’re doing and figure out ways to better and put the players in a better position. There’s certainly enough talent there. You know, we can run the ball well. We can throw the ball at times well but, we start pressing and turn the ball over, that’s just going to cause us a lot of problems. Disheartening, the turnovers. We just can’t afford to do that.”
Quarterback and captain Mike Husni accounted for the team’s three turnovers, all interceptions, and similarly to Accorsi, wants to make sure he puts his team in a better position to win.
“I’m a big part of that offense. I mean, I didn’t play well at all. I mean, three interceptions is inexcusable. I just kind of put us in a bad spot. So, I mean, the line blocked their tails off, running backs ran their tails off, receivers ran the right routes, ran hard. I’ve just got to do better, put them in a better position just to win,” Husni said.
Now, the team has to shift their focus back to practicing and improving for next weekend, Husni explained.
“We’ve all been having great practices, week by week. We’ve been sticking together with the young group like coach always says,” Husni said. “There’s not a lot of returners from 2019 season so holding a young group together, I’m going to give the whole team kudos for just sticking together through these times. But I don’t know. We’ll figure it out. Watch film Monday morning, break it down, get ready for homecoming.”
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