Captains struggle; lose to Salisbury

SALISBURY, Md. - Christopher Newport's offense sputtered Saturday, as the Captains dropped a 17-7 decision at Salisbury University. The road loss in front of 3,123 Homecoming fans at Sea Gull Stadium leaves the Captains with a 4-2 overall mark and a 3-2 record in the New Jersey Athletic Conference. The defeat snapped a two-game CNU winning streak. "We just never found our rhythm today on the offensive side," Head Coach Art Link said. "I thought we were a little sluggish and just didn't play as well as we're capable."

The Captains trailed just 3-0 at halftime, but fell behind 17-0 following two Sea Gulls scores in the third quarter on runs by Dandre Dennis (12 yards) and Brady Curley (seven yards). CNU finally got on the scoreboard with 1:23 remaining in the third quarter when sophomore quarterback Jack Anderson completed an 18-yard scoring pass to junior wide receiver Joshua Davis. Anderson, who played the entire second half in place of starter K.J. Kearney, completed 16 of 24 passes for 176 yards.

Christopher Newport managed just 61 rushing yards for the day on 26 carries, and the Captains were victimized by 11 penalties for 98 yards, including six for 60 yards in the opening half. "The penalties really hurt us," Link continued. "Just when we'd get something going, a penalty would bring it back. It's an issue we really have to work on."

Three different receivers posted five receptions for the Captains (junior Joshua Davis, freshman Cole Blais, and senior Tony Barnett). On the defensive side, seniors B.J. Hill and Brennan Gary along with junior Jamal Spence led the way on Saturday, each recording nine tackles. The defensive battle, played on a humid and 82-degree afternoon, featured 14 punts, seven from each squad.

Salisbury improved to 4-1 with the win, and 4-0 in the NJAC. The Sea Gulls were able to win despite not completing a pass in the game. Senior quarterback Brandon Lewis was 0 for 6 throwing the football, but did rush for 27 yards on ten carries for SU. The Sea Gulls, who remain tied with Wesley atop the NJAC standings, now have an 11-5 edge in the all-time series with the Captains, which dates back to CNU's first game ever in 2001.

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