GAME #2 FOOTBALL PREVIEW: Bears Face Second Straight Road Test

GAME #2 FOOTBALL PREVIEW: Bears Face Second Straight Road Test
SEPT. 13TH -- 5:00 -- DUDLEY, MASS.

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THE SERIES: Coast Guard leads 5-1.
LAST YEAR:  Sophomore Chris Gardner's 18 yard touchdown run with 10:31 left in the game gave Coast Guard the lead for good as the Bears overcame a 10-point second half deficit and scored the final 17 points of the game to beat Nichols 27-20 in a non-conference game.
Nichols took a 20-10 lead with 7:20 left in the third quarter before the Coast Guard defense dominated the rest of the game holding the Bison to just 24 yards and a pair of first downs the rest of the way.
Junior quarterback Ryan Jones carried 17 times for a career-high 108 yards and Gardner had 19 carries for 78 yards as Coast Guard rushed for 229 yards and had 301 yards of total offense. Jones was 4 of 13 for 72 yards with an interception in the air.
Nichols had 362 yards of total offense, 173 passing and 189 rushing.
The Bison would take a 7-0 when Michael Pina threw a 9-yard touchdown pass to Eric Mooney with 6:30 left in the first quarter to cap a 12 play, 92 yard drive on its first possession.
The Bears would respond with an eight play, 53 yard touchdown drive capped on a 1-yard run by sophomore Chris Gardner with 2:28 left in the opening quarter. Senior Chip Crowley gave the Bears excellent field position with a 39 yard kickoff return and sophomore Jon Wagner had a 32 yard run during the scoring drive.
Senior Jake Behne would recover a Nichols fumble at the Coast Guard 34 yard line on the ensuing possession and senior Cole Austin would connect on a 36-yard field goal to with 10:40 left in the half as the Bears took a 10-7 lead. The big play in the drive was a 30-yard pass from Jones to junior Miguel Moroles.
Nichols regained the lead 14-10 with 8:40 left in the half on a 10 yard touchdown run by Jacob Duffrene  to cap a 72 yard drive that took just two minutes.
Coast Guard was held to just four first downs and 116 total yards in the first half (32 passing and 84 rushing) while Nichols had 239 first half yards (123 rushing and 116 passing).
Jones was just 2 of 4 for 32 yards in the first half while Wagner had a 27-yard run on his only carry before leaving with an injury.
Duffrene's 29-yard touchdown run with 7:20 left in the third quarter opened the second half scoring, the extra point was missed and Nichols led 20-10.
The Coast Guard defense would then take the game getting stops on the final six possessions allowing just two first downs and 24 yards.
Following an exchange of punts, it took the Bears just two plays and 44 seconds to go 48 yards as Jones scored on a 17-yard run to pull to the Bears to within 20-17 with 4:03 left in the third quarter. Jones threw a 31-yard strike to junior Liam Middleton on the first play of the drive.
The Bears defense would force back-to-back three and outs and Gardner's 18-yard touchdown run with 10:31 left gave Coast Guard a 24-20 lead capping a 10 play, 62 yard drive. The key play was a 9-yard pass to Middleton on 3rd-and-4 to the Bison 23 to keep the drive alive.
The Coast Guard defense rose to the occasion once again with a three-and-out and Austin added a 38-yard field goal with 5:15 left as Coast Guard extended its leads to 27-20.
The Bears defense forced four straight three-and-outs and allowed just three yards on those 12 plays over those four possessions allowing the Bears to regain the lead.
The defense would force a fifth straight punt, but the Bears fumbled it away with 3:08 left giving the Bison life at their own 45 yard line. Nichols would turn it over on downs at the Bears 42 yard line with 1:31 left.
Coast Guard sophomore Justin Moffatt, who led the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) with 20 receptions and 263 yards was held without a reception.
Behne led the Coast Guard defense with 12 tackles, seven solo in the win. 
LAST WEEK: Both Coast Guard and Nichols opened the season with road wins as the Bears beat the University of New England 27-17 on Saturday nd Nichols was a 37-12 winner at Dean on Friday night.
Coast Guard scored in all phases of the game, offense, defense and special teams to grind out a season-opening 27-17 win over the University of New England. The Nor'easters had more yards than Coast Guard 324-234, but it was Coast Guard which won its fifth straight season opener. Jon Wagner (9 carries, 68 yards, TD) and Chris Gardner (13 carries, 59 yards) combined for 127 yards to lead the Bears ground attack while Ryan Jones was 11 of 21 for 63 yards with an interception. Justin Moffatt led the Bears with six receptions for 23 yards.
Senior Jake Wood caught three touchdown passes and junior Joshua Pierre-Charles broke off a 51-yard touchdown run in the 37-12 win at Dean. Senior Michael Pina threw for 242 yards and a career-high four scores as the Bison racked up 422 yards of total offense. The Brockton, Mass. native who transferred from Mount Ida last summer hit nine different receivers, led by Wood (6-111) and sophomore Hunter Ferreira (4-63). Pierre-Charles, meanwhile, finished with 96 rushing yards to lead the ground attack.
COACH GEORGE IS BEARS WINS LEADER: Coast Guard head coach Bill George, in his 21st season, has a record 71 career wins as head coach at the Academy as he passed John Merriman for the most in program history in the win over Maine Maritime on Oct. 19th, 2013.
Merriman was the coach from (1930-1945) and the Gymnasium is named is his honor. In 2012, George passed NFL Hall of Famer and former Director of Athletics and head football coach Otto Graham, who had 43 wins in his two stints as head coach (1959-'65 and 1974-'75). Coach George led the Bears to a pair of NEFC Bogan Division championships in 2006 and 2007.
BEARS PICKED 5TH IN NEWMAC PRESEASON POLL: Coast Guard has been picked to finish fifth in the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) preseason poll. Coast Guard was 7-3 overall and 5-2 in conference play. 
1.   Springfield (6) 
2.   MIT (2) 
T3. WPI 
T3. Merchant Marine
5.   Coast Guard
6.   Norwich 
7.   Catholic 
8.   Maine Maritime
BIZER EARNS NEWMAC WEEKLY HONOR: Junior linebacker Eugene Bizer was named the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Defensive Player of the Week.
Bizer had his first career interception and returned it 15 yards for a touchdown with 42 seconds left in the third quarter as Coast Guard took a 27-10 lead to put the game away in the season-opening win at the University of New England. He also led the Coast Guard defense with 10 tackles.
SCOUTING COAST GUARD: Coast Guard looks to open the season with back-to-back win for the first time since 2005 when the Bears beat Mass. Maritime (27-0) and Norwich (30-12) before losing the final seven games of the season. The Bears have opened the season 2-0 just twice since 1997.
The Bears, who open the season with three straight road games, will look to get things going offensively after being held to 234 yards in the opening win. Coast Guard ran for 171 yards as juniors Jon Wagner (9 carries, 68 yards, TD) and Chris Gardner (13 carries, 59 yards) combined for 127 yards to lead the way. 
Senior quarterback Ryan Jones was 11 of 21 for 63 yards with an interception, on a tipped ball on the opening drive of the game. Junior Justin Moffatt led the Bears with six receptions for 23 yards. He set the single-season school record last year with 71 receptions. 
The Bears defense allowed 324 yards to UNE, 278 of those passing and just 46 yards rushing. The Coast Guard defense was chasing quarterback Brian Peters all day long as the Bears registered seven sacks in the win. Junior defensive tackle Philip Orlando led the way with 2.5 sacks while senior defensive tackle Colby LaDuque added a pair.
Junior linebacker Eugene Bizer, who earned NEWMAC Defensive Player of the Week honors, had the big play in the second half, a 15-yard interception return for a touchdown to give the Bears a 27-10 lead with 42 seconds left. Those were the only Coast Guard points in the second half. 
SCOUTING NICHOLS: The Bison beat Dean 37-12 to open the season and the 37 points were the most in a season opener in program history. 
Senior Michael Pina, a transfer from Mount Ida last summer, threw for 242 yards and a career-high four touchdowns to lead the Bison as Nichols totaled 422 yards, 242 in the air and 180 on the ground. Senior Jake Wood caught three touchdown passes and finished with six receptions for 111 yards while junior Joshua Pierre-Charles led the way with 14 carries, 96 yards and a score on the ground.
Nichols allowed 284 yards, 192 passing and 92 rushing in the season opening win. Senior linebacker Chris Lawrence had a team-high nine tackles, all solo. The Bison recorded four sacks.
UP NEXT: Coast Guard travels to Norwich in the battle for The Mug.
Coast Guard at Nichols, 5:00
St. Lawrence at Norwich, noon
Catholic at Georgetown, noon
Kean at Springfield, noon
Maine Maritime at Plymouth State, noon
RPI at WPI, 2:30
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