Defense Shines as Football Tops AIC, 31-13

Felder goes over 100-yards and scores three TDs for second-straight game

Felder posted 151 all-purpose yards and scored three more touchdowns for the Skyhawks today (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)

EASTON, Mass. (October 5, 2019) – Stonehill College held its second opponent of the year under 200 total yards in picking up a 31-13 triumph over American International College in Northeast-10 Conference football action on Timothy J. Coughlin, '80 Memorial Field at W.B. Mason Stadium this afternoon.

Stonehill defense held AIC to just 191 total yards, including 73 passing, and ten first downs, while the Yellow Jackets were 0-for-12 on third down for the day and committed four turnovers. Junior Sam Athy paced the Skyhawks defense with five tackles (three solo), an interception that set up Stonehill's second touchdown of the day and recovered a fumble that he returned 35 yards to set up a field goal.

Senior Maurice Greene added four stops (three solo) for Stonehill, with a sack for a loss of six yards, while sophomore Dominick Spano posted three tackles (two solo), with a sack for a loss of eight. Sophomore Masyn Lorick shined on special teams for the Skyhawks, finishing with five tackles (three solo) and a fumble recovery on punt coverage that set up a second quarter touchdown.

Sophomore Justin Felder went over 100-yards rushing for the second-straight game in as many starts for Stonehill, finishing with 151 all-purpose yards and three total touchdowns for the second-straight game as well. He rushed the ball 22 times for 104 yards and two touchdowns, while adding another 47 yards on three receptions and a score. Felder is the first Stonehill running back go over 100-yards rushing in consecutive games since teammate Brian Kearns, Jr. did so in the season finale at Bentley University in 2016 and then the season-opener at Bloomsburg (Pa.) University in 2017.

Athy posted five tackles, an interception and a fumble recovery for the Skyhawks defense (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)

Junior Anton Stoneking completed 16-of-26 passes for 178 yards and two touchdowns. Senior Andrew Jamiel caught seven of those passes for 89 yards, while sophomore Connor Walsh posted his first career touchdown catch after the Athy interception.

Senior Matt Haite delivered a 22-yard field goal to cap the scoring on the afternoon for Stonehill, finishing the day with seven points in all. It marks his 33rd career field goal, matching the program record set by Stephen Grzywacz, '16. Haite also averaged 58.2 yards on his six kickoffs, with one touchback.

Sophomore Chase Speller paced the AIC offense with 18 carries for 72 yards and the Yellow Jackets lone offensive touchdown coming after AIC executed a fake punt for a first down late in the fourth quarter. Sophomore quarterback Jayson Demild was limited to 7-of-20 passing for 54 yards and two interceptions.

Junior Fabian Thames led the AIC defense with a game-high 13 tackles (nine solo), including 2.5 for a loss of four yards. Senior Cyriacus Ibezim added ten stops (five solo), including 0.5 for a loss, while junior Keith Jackson contributed six tackles (five solo) and an interception he returned 46 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter that pulled the Yellow Jackets back within 14-6.

Stonehill broke through on its third possession of the day as Felder posted a 23-yard touchdown run with 6:26 to play in the first quarter. The Skyhawks have scored in the first quarter in all four games this season (leading in all four) and have outscored their opponents 49-14 in the opening frame after Walsh's three-yard touchdown catch from Stoneking with 2:07 remaining in the first after Athy's interception set the Skyhawks up at the AIC 20.

Haite matched the program record for career field goals with his 33rd this afternoon (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)

AIC closed back within a score early in the second quarter, when Jackson intercepted Stoneking at the Stonehill 46 and ran it back for a touchdown with 13:11 remaining in the frame. It marks the first points scored by the Skyhawks opposition in the second quarter this season, but the hosts extended their lead after a Yellow Jackets fumble on a punt return late in the half. Lorick recovered the fumble after Stonehill's punt glanced off AIC postgrad Kyle Boyer-Tucker at the six. Felder found the end zone three plays later for his second touchdown of the game with 2:37 remaining in the half.

Stonehill extended its lead with ten points over its first two possessions of the second half. Felder did all the work on the Skyhawks first drive, rushing for 30 yards, including a 23-yard scamper, before Stoneking found him wide open down the right side for his first career touchdown reception from 41-yards out 3:06 into the quarter. Haite added his record-matching 22-yard field goal three and a half minutes later after Athy recovered a fumble, forced by junior Dohnavyn Jefferson at the end of a 20-yard Demild rush, and returned it 35 yards to the AIC 22.

AIC added a late two-yard touchdown rush from Speller on its last possession of the game, which was kept alive by a 30-yard rush by sophomore punter Rady Rojas-Portilla on fourth and eight from the Stonehill 43.

Stonehill (3-1, 2-0 NE10) hits the road next Saturday, for its first ever meeting with Franklin Pierce University, in Rindge, New Hampshire, at noon. The Skyhawks are back home the following Saturday, October 19, to host rival Bentley University at W.B. Mason Stadium at 1 p.m. AIC (2-3, 1-2 NE10) has a bye next weekend, before hosting Assumption College on October 19, at noon.

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