Brown’s Passing Game Overwhelms Cornell, 42-16

Brown’s Passing Game Overwhelms Cornell, 42-16

Providence, R.I. - Senior quarterback Marcus Fuller (Ashland, OH) threw for 306 yards and completed four touchdown passes to four different wide receivers to lead Brown to a 42-16 Ivy League win over Cornell Saturday afternoon at Brown Stadium. With the win, Brown evened its record at 3-3 overall and grabbed its first Ivy League win of the season (1-2), while Cornell fell to 0-6 overall, 0-3 in Ivy play.


"I'm pleased to be at .500 for the season," said Brown head coach Phil Estes.  "We're still a work in progress and are starting to get some players healthy.  If we can clean up some of our mistakes, we'll be a more consistent football team."


Brown's wide receiving corps enjoyed a spectacular day with senior Brian Strachan (Wellesley, MA) making four catches for 79 yards and a touchdown, junior Troy Doles (Saratoga, CA) grabbing seven passes for 77 yards and a touchdown and sophomore Alex Jette (North Attleboro, MA) making two catches for 58 yards and a touchdown.  Jette also rushed twice for 22 yards and had 44 punt return yards.


Senior wide receiver Reiley Higgins (Coto de Caza, CA) had an 11-yard touchdown grab and a 44-yard return of an onside kick for a touchdown.


"Our wide receivers did a real good job today," said Estes.  "Anytime you get four different wide receivers in the end zone it's a nice day. Marcus (Fuller) played much better and made some good throws."


Fuller wrapped up his day early in the fourth quarter after completing 20-of-33 passes for 306 yards and four touchdowns.


Defensively, Bears' senior tackle Zack Sparber (Newtown Square, PA) wreaked havoc with the Big Red backfield with five tackles, including three for a loss of 14 yards and a quarterback sack.  Senior linebacker Xavier Russo (San Francisco, CA) made a team high eight tackles.  Junior tackle Jake Walther (Pittsburgh, PA) and sophomore John Simpson (Murfreesboro, TN) each had two tackles for a loss.


"I was really happy with our defensive pressure," added Estes.  "We were able to take away Cornell's run and pass game until late in the final quarter."


Cornell got a late spark from quarterback Robert Somborn, who three two fourth-quarter touchdown passes and passed for 118 yards. Luke Hagy led the Big Red with 63 yards on the ground.


The Bears marched down the field on their first possession, moving 89 yards on four plays to grab a 7-0 lead with junior Andrew Coke (Andover, MA) blasting into the end zone from two yards away at the 7:48 mark of the opening quarter.  Two big pass plays made the difference in the drive, a 35-yard reception by Jette, and a 35-yard catch by Strahan that advanced the ball to the Big Red two yard line.


Cornell punter Chris Fraser pinned the Bears at their own one-yard line and the Big Red scored a safety when Fuller stepped on the end line, to trail, 7-2.


Fuller connected on a 23- yard touchdown throw to Jette, who made a diving catch in the back of the end zone to lift the Bears to a 14-2 lead with 3:38 left in the half. The Jette touchdown catch capped a nine play 92-yard scoring drive.


The Bears' struck just before the end of the half when Fuller lofted a 13-yard touchdown pass to Strachan, who made an over the shoulder catch in the end zone to give the Bears a 21-2 lead at halftime.


Freshman tailback Jake Hall (Tipp City, OH) got into the action with a 42-yard gain on a screen play early in the third quarter.  Hall's big play helped set up another Brown touchdown when Fuller connected on a 29-yard touchdown pass to Doles to give Brown a 28-2 lead with 11:46 left in the third quarter.


The Bears extended their lead to 35-2 when Fuller threw his fourth touchdown pass of the game, this time an 11-yard scoring strike to Higgins with 11:30 left in the game.


The Bears defense held the Big Red scoreless for 52 minutes before the Big Red scored on a 13 yard pass play from Somborn to Chris Lenz with 7:09 left in the game.


Higgins scored his second straight touchdown when he took a Cornell onside kick and ran 44 yards into the end zone to give the Bears a 42-9 advantage.


A late Somberg to Lenz 51 yard touchdown pass accounted for the final score, 42-16.


Brown travels south for the second time in three weeks to battle the Penn Quakers on Saturday, November 1 at Franklin Field in Philadelphia, Pa. Kick-off is scheduled for 1:00 p.m.