BACK ON TRACK: Football Monarchs Dominate Monmouth, 35-21
By ODU Athletics
Sept. 25, 2010
WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J. -- Wide receiver Prentice Gill (Los Angeles, Calif.) posted a Monarch record 154 receiving yards and quarterback Thomas DeMarco (Palm Desert, Calif.) threw for a career-high 407 yards in the Football Monarchs' 35-21 victory over Monmouth Saturday at Kessler Field.
ODU improves to 2-2 on the season. The Hawks, who were one of the two Monarch losses last season, falls to 0-3.
Gill finished the game with two touchdowns and also a two-point conversion. His 154 yards was the second time in ODU's brief history a Monarch captured 100+ receiving yards in a game. He also surpassed the previous record of 103 held by Nick Mayers (Va. Beach, Va.) in the game last season at Fordham.
DeMarco connected on 28 of his 47 attempts, including four touchdowns, for his first 400+ yard passing game of his career.
Defensively, the Monarchs' racked up 10 tackles resulting in the Hawks' losing 35 yards and three sacks having pushed back Monmouth quarterback Kyle Frasier 20 yards. T.J. Cowart (Va. Beach, Va.) led the charge with a career-high 10 stops, while Deron Mayo (Hampton, Va.), Chris Burnette (Randallstown, Md.), and Edmon McClam (Cowart, S.C.) each had sacks.
Monmouth capitalize on an early ODU turnover for a touchdown on its first drive, but the rest of Saturday's football game was Old Dominion as the Monarchs scored 27 answered points.
The Hawks' Don Brooks intercepted one of DeMarco's passes at Monmouth 36 and six plays later, the home team was sporting a 7-0 lead.
Back-to-back field goals by Jarod Brown (Yorktown, Va.) would get scoring going for the Monarchs. On the drive following the Hawks' first touchdown run, Brown kicked a 23-yarder to put ODU onto the scoreboard with 4:43 left in the first quarter. Then on ODU's opening drive of the second quarter, the Monarchs got deep into Hawk territory thanks in part to a 26-yard reception by Nick Mayers. Mayers' catch got the Monarchs to the Monmouth three-yard line, but the Hawks defense held forcing Brown back onto the field for another field goal attempt. His 20-yard attempt sailed through the uprights helping the Monarchs to trail by just one point, 7-6, with 8:51 remaining in the opening half.
It wasn't long before ODU would collect its first touchdown and go ahead for good. The Hawks were unable to move the chains and the ball promptly was back to a Monarch possession. Starting at the Monmouth 33 thanks in part to a Hawk foul, DeMarco needed just a pair of passes to help lead his team into the end zone. His second pass, a 22-yard throw to Reid Evans (Hampton, Va.), gave the Monarchs a 13-7 edge, a lead they would not relinquish, and Evans' third touchdown catch of the year with just under seven minutes left in the half.
Gill added to the lead later in the quarter with his first appearance in the end zone. A 21-yard throw from DeMarco found its way into in Gills' hands in the right corner of the end zone to help give ODU a 20-7 lead.
The Monarchs would score on their next possession to head into the locker room with a dominating 27-7 advantage. ODU covered 87 yards in eight plays resulting in a Chris Lovitt (Stafford, Va.) four-yard touchdown reception.
Monmouth ended the scoring drought to end the third quarter on a five-yard run over the end line by Frazier capping the 15-play, 87-yard drive.
Both teams would trade scores in the fourth quarter for the final 35-21 margin. Gill posted his second touchdown reception with a 48-yard catch from DeMarco and converted the two-point conversion with 7:17 left in the game. Monmouth's final score came on their next drive on a 10-yard reception by Nick Romeo.
The Old Dominion Football Monarchs return home to host Gardner-Webb on Saturday, October 2nd at 6 p.m. at Foreman Field at S.B. Ballard Stadium.
ON THE ROAD:
ODU improves to 5-1 overall on the road including a 2-0 mark this season with wins over Monmouth and Campbell (44-13).
BATTLE OF THE PUNTERS:
Monmouth sported the nation's leader in punting in Jack Daniels. Daniels entered today's game leading the nation at 46.73 yards per punt. Today he averaged 37.7 yards in his six punts The Monarchs' Jonathan Plisco (Newport News, Va.) led the nation in punting last year at 44.84 per punt. Entering Saturday's contest, he was averaging 50.0 yards, but does not compute into the NCAA rankings not having made the minimum 3.6 punts per game average through the first three games of the season. Plisco's services were only needed twice. Although his first attempt only traveled four years, his second punt went for 41 yards.
THERE'S A FIRST TIME FOR EVERYTHING:
Old Dominion was ranked number one in the nation in sacks allowed having not allowed an opponent to touch DeMarco entering Saturday's contest. However, the Hawks managed to take down DeMaro twice in Saturday's game.
NEARING THE CENTURY MARK:
Quarterback Thomas DeMarco surpassed the 1,000 career rushing mark. With 14 yards on 10 carries against the Hawks, he now has 1,010 yards in his 15 games at a Monarch.
BLOCK THAT KICK:
Alex Arain registered ODU's first block of the season and the eighth overall in the two-year program. Arain blocked the nation's leading punter, Jack Daniels, in third quarter.
BIG PLAY DAY:
Not only did T.J.Cowart lead the defense with his career-high 10 tackles, he also had a fumble recovery late in the first quarter.