Bobcats Beat Salisbury, Win Regents Cup
FSU Football Ends 12-Year Losing Streak to Salisbury
The 18th Annual Regents Cup between Frostburg and Salisbury occurred Saturday, and SU had won the last 12 meetings. However, that all changed when FSU surged late in the game as the Bobcats came back to beat the Sea Gulls 21-17 at Bobcat Stadium on senior day to win their eighth straight game, and to finish 8-1 in NJAC play and 9-1 overall. This is the first time that they have won eight straight games and finished 9-1 overall since 1993.
Midway through the first quarter, senior tight end Aaron Turner hauled in a 12-yard touchdown pass from sophomore quarterback Connor Cox as the Bobcats took a 7-0 lead.
However, it wasn’t easy as SU answered back in the second quarter when quarterback Ryan Jones threw a short pass to Aaron Moore and he dashed 84 yards down the field for the touchdown as the Sea Gulls tied the game up at 7-7.
Late in the half, the Bobcats had their longest drive of the afternoon when marched 90 yards down the field on seven plays, as Cox found another tight end, sophomore Christian DiPaola, over the middle for a 21-yard score as FSU had a 14-7 lead at halftime.
Also in the second half, Salisbury kicker Alex Potocko had two notable field goal attempts; one was good from 25 yards, and a 40-yard attempt that was blocked by Frostburg freshman Malik Morris. The Bobcats still had a 14-10 lead. However, the Sea Gulls looked like they were about win their 13th straight against the Bobcats when Sean Rowland ran for a 45-yard touchdown as SU led 17-14.
Frostburg’s ensuing drive after the Salisbury score resulted in a three-and-out, but on their next drive with 4:22 remaining, the Bobcats went to work. They were able work from their own 21 to the 14 through a series of good plays and penalties on SU, and then Cox came through in the clutch as he found junior wide receiver Russell Neverdon in the corner of the end zone for the game-winning touchdown with 1:04 remaining.
The Bobcats defense was able to stop the Sea Gulls on their ensuing possession as they forced Jones to throw three incomplete passes, and on third down he was sacked back to the 15 by junior defensive end Jordan Proctor after a bad snap.
After the game, the Bobcats celebrated as the winners of the 18th Annual Regents Cup, and fans got to storm the field. FSU was finally able to knock the monkey off their back as they ended their 12-game losing streak against in-state rival Salisbury. The victory also handed Frostburg a share of the New Jersey Athletic Conference Championship.
Connor Cox captured Mike McGlinchey MVP honors for the Bobcats after totaling 266 yards in offense and three touchdowns. He completed 13 of 31 passes and all three of FSU’s touchdowns. He also led all players with 115 yards on the ground on 12 carries.
For Salisbury, quarterback Ryan Jones won McGlinchey MVP honors after throwing for 140 yards and one TD.
The Bobcats are now waiting for a possible bid for the NCAA Playoffs for the first time since 1993. FSU is also now ranked #24 in DIII college football. Head Coach DeLane Fitzgerald is proud of the way his team has played this season. “It feels good to have won nine games this fall and to be going somewhere to play this postseason,” he said. “Our entire football program is happy, but we know that our work isn’t done yet, we have at least one more game to win.”
Featured image: Eddie Cooke celebrates by holding the trophy high above the a sea of fans. (Matt Cumblidge/TBL)