2019 DELAWARE STATE UNIVERSITY FOOTBALL — GAME 7
DELAWARE STATE “HORNETS” (1-5 / 0-4 MEAC)
MERRIMACK “WARRIORS” (2-4)
SAT., OCT. 19, 2019 (2:00 p.m.)
ALUMNI STADIUM (6,800) - DOVER, DEL.
Live Stream - ESPN3 / MEAC DIGITAL NETWORK
Live Audio - HSRN.com (DSU broadcast) or XM 386 / XM app Channel 982
FAMILY & YOUTH DAY
Delaware State takes a break from Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference play to battle Football Championship Subdivision newcomer Merrimack of Andover, Mass. The Hornets bring a four-game losing streak into the contest, including a 34-3 setback at Morgan State last Saturday. The Bears led 21-0 before DSU scored its only points on a field goal early n the third quarter. Richard Harris (r-jr.), making his first start for the Hornets, rushed for a career-high 151 yards, highlighted by a 41-yard run, to lead all players. The run yards were the most by a DSU players since 2016. Defensively, Hornet linebacker Brooks Parker (so.) had a game-and-career high 12 tackles (seven solo), including a sack. Linebacker Pontraille Gray (sr.) had seven solo stops and two assists for a career-high nine tackles in the game for Delaware State.
Merrimack has been idle since a 24-17 home loss to Bryant on Oct. 5. The score was tied at 7, 14 and 17 before Bryant scored the go-ahead touchdown with 1:20 left in the third quarter. The Warriors won the total yardage battle 354-333, but held the ball for 26:38 compared to 33:22 for the Bulldogs. Merrimack quarterback Christian Carter completed 16-of-36 passes for 185 yards and a touchdown in the game.
Delaware is averaging 17.8 points and 278.5 total yards per game. The Hornets are seventh in the MEAC is rushing at 113.7 yards per game and seventh in
passing at 164.8 yards per contest. Defensively, DSU is faring better, allowing 355.5 yards per game to rank fourth in thr MEAC. Freshman quarterback Tylik Bethea has started the last five games. Bethea enters the weekend ranked seventh in the MEAC in passing average at 143.2 yards per game and ninth in the league in pass efficiency with a 93.2 passer rating. For the season, the rookie signal-caller has completed 76-of-168 passes (45.2%) for 859 yards with five touchdowns and four interceptions. He was selected as the MEAC Rookie-of-the-Week after completing 16-of-28 passes for 181 yards and two touchdowns in the Hornets’ 58-12 win over Lincoln (Pa.) on Sep. 8. Richard Harris (r-sr.) has taken over the team lead in rushing with 266 yards to rank seventh in the MEAC at 44.3 yards per game. Wide receiver Kwannah Kollie (jr.) has emerged as one of the MEAC’s top pass catchers this season. Kollie is fifth in the league in receptions (4.5 pg), eighth in receiving yards (58.0 ypg) and tied for fourth in touchdown catches (4). Wide receiver Bizzett Woodley (fr.) has two touchdown grabs this season. On defense, the Hornets have played the last two games without inside linebacker Brian Cavicante (sr.), the 2019 Preseason MEAC Defensive Player-of-the-Year, who is likely out for the remainder of the season due to a knee injury. Fellow linebacker Brooks Parker (so.) is tops on the team and 14th in the MEAC in tackles at 6.2 per game (37 total). On the front line, Brandon Carswell (gr.) has 23 tackles and ranks among the league leaders in tackles for loss (9) and sacks (4). Defensive back Jahad Niebauer (sr.), a Preseason All-MEAC First Team selection, is 18th in the league in tackles at 5.7 per game (34 total). Hornet cornerback D’Andre Blue-Eli (so.) is tied for third in the MEAC with two interceptions.
Merrimack is in its first season as a provisional Football Championship Subdivision team, and is a future full-fledged member of the Northeast Conference, which also include Delaware State’s Nov. 23 opponent St. Francis (Pa.). The Warriors are averaging 32 points and 368.5 yards per game. Quarterback Christian Carter is having a stellar season, completing 114-of-205 passes (55.6%) for 1276 yards with 10 touchdowns and six interceptions. Marquis Spencer is the Warriors’ top receiver with 45 catches for 479 and six touchdowns. Matt Brehon has a team-high 340 yards rushing, averaging 8.5 yards per carry to go along with five touchdowns. Merrimack is allowing 321.2 yards per game, 1218 on the ground and 199.3 by the pass. Linebacker Michael Mercuri (r-jr.) is the team leader with 45 tackles, including 29 solo stops. Defensive back Darion McKenzie has a team-high three interceptions, while lineman Cory Hagerman leads the Warriors with 5.5 sacks.
This is the first meeting between the teams.