Football drops conference tilt at Jacksonville
Traveling to Florida to take on conference rival Jacksonville last Saturday, the Marist football team knew that they would not only be playing a physical Dolphins team, but they would also be playing in much different weather than they had been used to.
Unfortunately, the elements and the physicality would be too much for the Red Foxes to overcome, as they lost to Jacksonville 26-14. The loss dropped the team's record to 2-2 overall, and 1-1 in Pioneer League play.
"The guys played extremely hard and physical in this game," head coach Jim Parady said. "I thought we handled the heat pretty well. But both the offense and the defense were inconsistent in some areas."
Marist's offense was unable to put together consistent drives throughout the game, as they were held to season-low 187 total yards. Running backs Calvin McCoy and Emmanuel Onakoya led the attack, combining for 85 yards and two touchdowns.
Parady explained that the biggest issue for the offense was converting on third down. The team went 3-13 on third down.
"There were too many three and outs, and we were 5-15 overall, including fourth down," Parady said.
Parady also believed that Jacksonville's defense did not allow the passing game to move as well as it had been throughout the season. Chuckie Looney, who threw for 403 yards the previous week, amounted for only 86 yards on 7-21 passing attempts.
"The way that they [Jacksonville] play defense, they take away a lot of first and second level throws. They basically want you take the big shots down the field. Unfortunately, we were not able to make those plays," Parady said.
On the defensive side of the ball, Marist allowed 364 yards to the Dolphins, but was able to stay in the game due to three forced turnovers. Jack Marston and Zach Adler each had interceptions, and Chris Katerianakis forced a fumble that Marist recovered at their own four-yard line.
While the turnovers were nice, Parady still saw some issues in the defense that he would like them to work on moving forward.
"We bent," Parady said. "[Jacksonville] got some yardage on us, and in some cases we did not tackle well."
Despite the final score, Parady was pleased with his team's efforts, wants his players to focus on the good things they did in this game, and apply them to the second half of the season.
"When you lose a game, you are very disappointed, and sometimes you lose sight of the fact that you did so many things right," Parady said. "I want to make sure that, as we move into the second half of the season, there are areas that we want to fine tune and get better at."
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