Unexpected passes help Salisbury win Regents Cup

Salisbury 35 Frostburg State 14

November 11, 2007|By Rich Scherr | Rich Scherr,Special to the Sun

Salisbury has relied on its option offense all season to accumulate big yardage in its running game.

In yesterday's ninth annual Regents Cup game against rival Frostburg State, however, the 13th-ranked Sea Gulls went to a seldom-used option - the pass - to time and again burn the Bobcats' defense in a 35-14 win at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.

Quarterback Ronnie Curley, a junior out of Howard High School, completed five of his six passes for 179 yards and two touchdowns, both to wide receiver Kevin Tillage, helping Salisbury gain 448 yards of offense and post its fourth straight win in the series.

"Timing is everything when you run the option," Sea Gulls coach Sherman Wood said.

The Sea Gulls (9-1 overall, 3-1 Atlantic Central Football Conference) must wait to see if they are one of 32 teams selected for the NCAA Division III football tournament. The field will be announced at 11:30 a.m. today. Should they fail to earn a bid, they most likely will end up in an Eastern College Athletic Conference bowl game Saturday.

Coming off its first loss of the season two weeks ago against Wesley, Salisbury was motivated to beat its rival.

Trailing 7-6 early in the second quarter, Salisbury - which had nearly four times as many rushing yards as passing entering the day - took control of the game through the air.

Curley stepped up in the pocket at the Bobcats' 36-yard line and found Tillage uncovered near the goal line, 10 yards behind the nearest defender, for a touchdown.

Late in the half, slotback Valdase Morris slipped down the sideline unnoticed, and Curley found him for a 40-yard reception to take the ball to the 6.

Frostburg (2-7, 0-4) moved the ball well in the middle of the field but time and again self-destructed in the red zone.

The Sea Gulls, who entered the game averaging nearly 43 points, broke the school's single-season scoring record, established in 2005.

Frostburg State 7 0 0 7-14

Salisbury 6 14 0 15-35

First quarter FS-Young 3 run (Menhorn kick), 5:41. Sal-Curley 1 run (kick failed), 2:10.

Second quarter Sal-Tillage 36 pass from Curley (Kincaid kick), 12:15. Sal-Morris 8 run (Kincaid kick), 1:43.

Fourth quarter Sal-Tillage 79 pass from Curley (Morris pass from Curley), 13:52. Sal-Garner 1 run (Kincaid kick), 4:53. FS-Dixon 2 run (Menhorn kick), 1:45. A-2,462.

FS Sal

First downs 21 21

Rushes-yards 48-161 54-269

Passing 139 179

Comp-Att-Int 13-26-2 5-6-0

Return Yards 116 87

Punts-Avg. 3-35.7 1-40

Fumbles-Lost 5-1 4-3

Penalties-Yards 6-40 11-83

Time of Possession 33:13 26:47 Rushing-Frostburg State, Young 21-94, Dixon 19-40, Potter 2-17, Wade 6-10. Salisbury, Leonard 14-70, Curley 18-59, Morris 7-49, Fisher 6-39, Woolson 3-31, Garner 5-21. Passing-Frostburg State, Dixon 13-26-2-139. Salisbury, Curley 5-6-0-179. Receiving-Frostburg State, Fowler 3-54, Young 3-9, Howze 2-49, Shorter 2-18, Potter 2-12, Heggs 1-(minus) 3. Salisbury, Tillage 2-115, Newton 2-24, Morris 1-40.

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