ESU Football beat Edinboro University 34-14 in their home debut last Saturday, Sept. 21. The Warriors are now 3-0 for the first time since the 2009 season.
The game got off to a fast start and the Warriors took the opening drive and marched down the field for their first touchdown.
Redshirt sophomore quarterback Jake Cirillo scored on a quarterback keeper to make the score 7-0 ESU.
On the next possession, ESU’s defense recovered an Edinboro fumble. Eight plays later they capitalized with redshirt junior tailback Devante Robinson scored on a one-yard touchdown run.
The Warriors were up 14-0 within the first nine minutes of the game and never looked back on their way to their third victory of the season.
Cirillo went 22-for-27 for 223 yards and one touchdown. He had a 113.43 passer rating based on the NFL (National Football League) passer rating formula where anything over 100 is outstanding.
Cirillo credited the coaching staff for his breakout game, praising the game plan that was drawn up.
“We worked our butts off the whole week,” stated Cirillo. “So when we get to Saturday, it’s time to have fun.”
The redshirt sophomore is confident that this team is ready for the challenges that are ahead of them.
“We are ready. We are excited. As long as we follow our values–working hard, competing, and doing it right like Coach says–being great men in the classroom on the field and off the field, we should be fine,” Cirillo said.
Sophomore wide receiver Rece Bender had a punt return for a touchdown called back because of an illegal block in the back penalty.
After playing the first two games of the season on the road, Bender was happy to be playing at home.
“3-0 is a great feeling, but it’s on to the next one. We have 24 hours to celebrate this, but we got Lock Haven next week. That’s our next opponent,” Bender said.
Overall, head coach Jimmy Terwilliger was pleased with the team’s effort in all three phases of the game.
“It’s nice getting out to a good jump. But really, the game is won in between–the middle,” stated Terwilliger. That middle time when you make those first adjustments, and you settle into the game. Then you have to finish,” Terwilliger said.
Despite the win, Terwilliger acknowledged that the Warriors still have a lot of work to do, especially on special teams.
“We got a big play called back. We gave up field position late in the game that you can’t do in winning meaningful games against opponents,” stated Terwilliger.
The head coach was also happy with the support from the home crowd.
“Warrior Nation was outstanding today,” Terwilliger said.
“We have a special fan base, and I think that it’s a great thing. I am really grateful for the opportunity to coach in front of such great fans and such great support.”
ESU (3-0) will play Lock Haven (1-2) on the road this Saturday, Sept. 28.
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