By Nick Granados
ESU Football opened up their home schedule on a sour note as the Warriors suffered a 56-24 drubbing at the hands of Slippery Rock University.
Warriors tailback Robert Healy opened up the scoring 2:46 into the game with a 19-yard touchdown run.
However, Slippery Rock answered back less than two minutes later with a 17-yard touchdown run from Shamar Greene. The Rock took a 14-7 lead after Zack Newsock connected with Jamile Dutrieulle for a 35-yard touchdown.
A Matt Smith field goal made it a 14-10 game early into the second quarter. However, Slippery Rock added to their lead with two Teddy Blakeman touchdown runs, of 1 yard and 3 yards respectively, to make it a 28-10 game midway through the second quarter.
With just under four minutes left in the second quarter, the Warriors blocked a Slippery Rock field goal attempt, which was returned 95 yards by junior cornerback Teron Dobbs to make it an 11-point game.
Unfortunately for ESU, it was almost all Slippery Rock after that.
With 1:05 left in the quarter, Derrick Fulmore intercepted ESU quarterback Matt Soltes, one of Soltes’ three interceptions on the night, and returned it 22 yards for a touchdown. With that, ESU went into halftime facing a 35-17 deficit.
Slippery Rock running back Teddy Blakeman struck once again and ran for his third touchdown of the night, this time on a 30 yard run, to give The Rock a commanding 42-17 lead. Less than two minutes later, running back Brett Crenshaw extended Slippery Rock’s lead to 49-17 with a 2-yard touchdown run.
Eight seconds into the fourth quarter, Slippery Rock quarterback Zack Newsock found running back Julian Durden to extend the lead to 56-17.
Although Matt Soltes found wide receiver Jon Schnaars for a 14-yard touchdown pass with four minutes left in the quarter, it was too little to late as The Rock defeated ESU 56-24.
ESU quarterback Matt Soltes completed 20 of 47 passes for 297 yards, a touchdown, and three interceptions. Soltes now has four in the first two games of the 2014 season and is one interception away from matching his total interceptions in the 2013 season (5).
Redshirt sophomore running back Robert Healy led all ESU rushers with carries for 86 yards and a touchdown, while Slippery Rock’s Shamar Greene and Teddy Blakeman became the twelfth pair of teammates to run for over 100 yards against ESU since 1974.
ESU will look to rebound when they head west to take on Edinboro on Saturday at 12:00 PM. The game can be heard on ESPN Poconos 840 AM and seen on WatchESPN.com.
Email Nick at: