RINDGE, N.H. – The Saint Anselm College football team jumped out to a 43-0 lead through the game's first 21-plus minutes on the way to a 50-10 victory over the Ravens from Franklin Pierce University on Saturday.
Saint Anselm improves to 2-5 overall on the year and to 2-2 against Northeast-10 Conference opponents, winning back-to-back games. Franklin Pierce, in its first season of NCAA Division II competition, falls to 1-6 overall while remaining winless in five league contests.
Saint Anselm created a halftime score of 43-3 with only 184 yards of offense, averaging 5.6 yards per play. Defensively, the Hawks posted 13 tackles for a combined loss of 21 yards and also recorded the squad's first interception of the 2019 season.
Senior quarterback Eric Fairweather (Londonderry, N.H.) threw for four touchdowns, completing 16-of-27 passes, while logging a rushing touchdown on the day. Fairweather hooked up with senior Nicholas Fiorillo (Westford, Mass.) for two touchdowns and also connected with classmate Franklin Holgate (Easton, Mass.) and sophomore Bobby Long (Bridgewater, Mass.) for aerial scores.
Fairweather has had a hand in 64 touchdowns during his career, trailing the team's all-time leader, Yianni Gavalas '17, by only one. With Fairweather calling the plays in the first half, the Hawks ultimately had 12 student-athletes catch at least one pass on the way to victory.
Junior Joey Cody (Cinnaminson, N.J.) had three punts in the contest, setting the single-game record for average yards per punt (min. three punts) with 47 in the contest. He booted a game-high 56 yarder in the winning effort and also set his single-season high mark with 1,377 yards to his credit.
Freshman Devin Williams (Cliffwood, N.J.) blocked two punts in the win, covering up one loose ball for a defensive touchdown. No other Hawks student-athlete in team history had blocked multiple punts in one game.
Freshman Justin Villanueva (Lowell, Mass.) led the Hawks with nine tackles on the day, forcing a fumble in the process. Sophomore Aidan Gillis (Marblehead, Mass.) had five tackles, including two for a loss of two yards.
On the game's first pass attempt by Franklin Pierce, sophomore Chance Clency (High Point, N.C.) came up with an interception and brought it back 14 yards to put the Hawks in great field position. Saint Anselm needed only three plays to come up with its first score of the day as Fairweather connected with Fiorillo for the nine-yard reception to create a 6-0 lead.
Forcing a punt on the next two Franklin Pierce offensive possessions, Fairweather connected with Fiorillo once again, this time on a seven-yard touchdown to add to the Hawks advantage. Brown had the longest reception on the drive, picking up 21 yards to net the first down and set up the second Hawks score.
Fairweather tacked on a rushing touchdown of his own on his team's next offensive possession, sprinting home three yards for his 28th career rushing touchdown with exactly three minutes left in the first quarter. With the added two-point conversion carried home by Fairweather, the Hawks opened up a commanding 22-0 lead.
The Hawks followed another Franklin Pierce three-and-out with a blocked punt by Williams, who fell on the ball in the end zone to create a 30-0 advantage after the first quarter.
Back-to-back Franklin Pierce punts were answered by Saint Anselm with touchdowns in the second quarter. Holgate reeled in an 11-yard pass from Fairweather with 11:02 to go in the first half prior to classmate Malik Allen (West Orange, N.J.) picking up the one-yard catch for the second touchdown of his career.
With no time on the clock in the first half, Morgan Smith hit a 31-yard field goal to put the hosts on the scoreboard entering halftime.
Sophomore Perrin Conant (Kennebunk, Maine) began the second half under center for the Hawks, completing seven of his 10 passes for 77 yards. He also fired his first collegiate touchdown, a six-yard pass to Long that created a 50-3 advantage for the Hawks.
Franklin Pierce added another score near the midpoint of the third quarter as Tyvarius Daniels returned an errant pass from freshman signal-caller Anthony Marino (Bradenton, Fla.) with a 56-yard interception.
The Ravens were led by Drew Campanale and his four passes for 37 yards. Tyler Jones had a team-leading 16 carries for 45 yards and Najiere Hutchinson had a team-best nine tackles for Franklin Pierce on defense.