WHAT A RIDE: Monarchs Season Ends With Second Round Loss at Georgia Southern
Dec. 3, 2011
Post-Game Press Conference:
STATESBORO, Ga. -- The Old Dominion Football Monarchs' 2011 season came to a close on Saturday with a 55-48 second round playoff loss at third-seeded Georgia Southern at Paulson Stadium.
In just their third season of play, the Monarchs conclude the 2011 season at 10-3 overall.
Dominique Swope led the Eagles triple option offense with 255 yards on 31 carries with a pair of touchdowns. Georgia Southern totaled 477 yards on the ground.
The Monarchs and Eagles combined for 1167 yards of total offense. Old Dominion's 560 yards of offense were the most yards allowed by Georgia Southern this season.
Quarterback Taylor Heinicke got the Monarchs to within a touchdown with 39 seconds left in the game at 55-48, but ODU's on-side kick went to Georgia Southern to seal the six-time national champions' way to the third round against fellow CAA member Maine.
After scoring occurred in nine of ten drives, going back to the game's opening quarter, the see-saw battle between ODU and Georgia Southern came to a lull late in third quarter with the Monarchs trailing 41-35. While ODU failed to convert at fourth and one at the GSU40, a fumble by the Eagles on the ensuing Georgia Southern possession at the ODU 2 in the early moments of the fourth quarter had the Monarchs recapture possession on the Craig Wilkins recovery
Just as the Monarchs got into Eagle territory, ODU fumbled and resulted in Georgia Southern's Jaybo Shaw capturing his second touchdown of the game four plays later and the first back-to-back scoring by a team in the game. The two-point conversion gave Georgia Southern a 49-35 lead with 8:15 remaining.
The Monarchs tried their first on-side kick of the game, but the Eagles took possession in ODU territory. Swope fumbled the ball in the end zone, but Georgia Southern's Nico Hickey recovered the ball for the touchdown with just over two minutes left in the game giving the Eagles a 55-41 edge.
A minute and half later, the Monarchs were facing being down by just a touchdown. Looking at fourth and seven at their own 37, Heinicke found Prentice Gill for a 30-yard completion and then scrambled for 13 yards into the red zone and capped the drive with his 20-yard over the goal setting up the Monarchs to attempt on the on-side kick.
Defensively, Chad King lead all defenders with 10 tackles (7 solo, 3 assisted), a career-high for the senior Monarch. Linebacker John Darr also collected eight tackles, while safety Carvin Powell and defensive linemen Edmon McClam and Erik Saylor each had seven. Saylor also registered the Monarchs' 11th blocked kick of the year thwarting a Georgia State PAT attempt and halting the Eagles' Adrian Mora's string of a FCS record 151 consecutive made extra points.
Since restarting its football team in 2009, Old Dominion has become the winningest start-up program in FCS history with a three-year total of 27 wins and only eight losses. In 2011, the Monarchs garnered their first national ranking, including cracking the top ten after concluding the regular season at 9-2 overall and 6-2 mark in the Colonial Athletic Association, a league which sent five teams to the post-season.
The Monarchs graduate only eight seniors from the roster - defensive linemen Ronnie Cameron, Chad King, and Edmon McClam, linebacker J.J. Williams, quarterback Thomas DeMarco, offensive linemen Ryan Jensen and Jeremy Hensley, and wide receiver Prentice Gill.
BOTH SIDE OF THE BALL:
DOUBLE DIGIT RUSHING TDs:
BLOCK THAT KICK:
PLAYING THE RANKED TEAMS:
#12/13 William & Mary (L, 17-21) on September 18th, 2010
#14/16 Cal Poly (L, 37-50) on October 9th, 2010
#7/6 Delaware (L, 17-27) on September 24, 2011
#20 UMass (W, 48-33) on October 2, 2011
#17/23 Towson (L, 35-39) on October 15, 2010
#9/10 James Madison (W, 23-20) on October 29, 2011
#19/22 Norfolk State (W, 35-18) on November 26, 2011
#3/2 Georgia Southern (L, 48-55) on December 3, 2011
ON THE ROAD:
TIED WITH FIVE:
RUN MONARCHS RUN:
He also ran a pair of fake punts that helped result in first downs for the Monarchs. DeMarco's first was on the Monarchs' opening drive with ODU at fourth and six at their own 35. DeMarco's other was on the Monarchs' first drive of the third quarter with ODU at fourth and sixth at the their own 45. While his pass was incomplete to Larry Pinkard, pass interference by the Eagles continued the ODU drive and Pinkard would later catch an eight-yard pass in the end zone to tie the game at 35-35