Fordham Beats Georgetown, Improves to 7-0


The Rams couldn’t overcome a slow start to beat Colgate on Saturday. (Melanie Chamberlain/THE OBSERVER)


(Melanie Chamberlain/The Observer)
(Melanie Chamberlain/The Observer)

The Fordham Rams football now have a 7-0 record after delivering a beating against the Georgetown University Hoyas. It was a tale of two sides of the line, as both the offense and the defense put up strong efforts to give Fordham the 34-12 win. You would have to go back 83 years, to 1930, when the team had an undefeated 7-0 record.

On the game’s opening drive, Fordham managed to score a touchdown after quarterback Mike Nebrich, Fordham College at Rose Hill (FCRH) ’15, found wide receiver Brian Wetzel, FCRH ’15, in the end zone. Fordham went up 7-0, and the defense managed to hold Georgetown’s offense throughout the rest of the first quarter. A combined sack from defensive linesman DeAndre Slate, FCRH ’15, and Austin Hancock, FCRH ’15, helped to stop a Georgetown scoring drive.

With 2:40 left in the first, Fordham got on the board again. Nebrich, starting on his own 20, threw four completed passes, including a 28-yard pass to wide receiver Tebucky Jones, Jr, FCRH ’15. After the pass to Jones, Nebrich ran eight yards for another Fordham touchdown, increasing the lead to 13-0. Almost immediately, Fordham scored again. Defensive back, Jordan Chapman, FCRH ’15, intercepted a pass from Georgetown’s quarterback, Isaiah Kempf and returned it for a defensive Fordham touchdown. The Rams then decided to go for the risky two-point conversion and easily made it, making their lead 21-0 by the end of the first quarter.

Fordham’s offense wasn’t as dominating in the second quarter, but once again, the defense was booming. The Hoyas didn’t score a field goal or touchdown. They trotted into halftime scoreless. But Fordham was able to expand their lead once more. Starting with great field position, at their own 41-yard line, Nebrich, once again, spotted Jones for a 48-yard gain. During the very next play, running back Jordan Crayton, FCRH ’16, got through the line of scrimmage and never looked back. He ran for a touchdown, and with the extra point field goal, Fordham’s lead was 28-0.

The score remained 28-0 for the rest of the first half, although Fordham had multiple chances to score and blow the game wide open. Towards the end of the second quarter, Crayton rushed for another possible touchdown, but ended up fumbling the ball at the one yard line. The Hoyas got back the ball but didn’t do much, handing it back to the Rams with about forty seconds left in the first half. Again, Nebrich successfully led the team into Georgetown territory. However, at their chance at a field goal attempt, the kicker Michael Marando, FCRH ’15, missed the goal by going wide left. Still, Fordham led the game by four possessions.

After halftime, Fordham had first possession of the ball and scored again. Starting from their own 37, the Rams made it down to the Hoyas’ eight-yard line. This time, Marando successfully kicked in the field goal from 25 yards, giving Fordham a 31-0 lead. With nine minutes left in the third quarter, Georgetown and Fordham both got the ball and both drives resulted in punts. It wasn’t until there was 3:49 left in the third quarter that Georgetown finally had a decent drive. After starting at their own 45-yard line, outstanding field position almost at midfield, Georgetown made it to Fordham’s 32-yard line. From there, Hoyas’ kicker, Matt MacZura, booted in a good field goal from the 49-yard line with just 1:19 remaining in the third.

The fourth quarter started out rough for the Rams. Following a 47-yard punt by MacZura, the ball ended up on Fordham’s two yard line. But then, Fordham got called for a penalty. Defensive back, Lourenzo Smith, FCRH ’15, was called for illegal blocking, and Fordham had to move the ball to the one-yard line. When running back Carlton Koonce, FCRH ’14, started to run for yards, he was tackled in the backfield by Georgetown’s Jordan Richardson, causing a safety. Following the safety, Georgetown got the ball once more but couldn’t convert any point so they handed the ball back to Fordham.

With 4:44 left in the game, Marando scored another field goal, this time connecting it from the 27-yard line. This put Fordham up 34-5. But with just 1:36 left in the game, Georgetown scored their first and only touchdown. Tim Barnes tossed a 15-yard pass to Michael Cimilluca to give Georgetown 12 points. For the game, linebacker Stephen Hodge, FCRH ’15, led the defense by setting a career high of 14 tackles, including a sack.

In the end, Fordham won 34-12 and improved to 7-0 while Georgetown fell to 1-5 on the season. The Rams have now beaten the Hoyas in seven of their last eight matchups, according to Fordham Sports. Nebrich, who was playing near his hometown of Lake Braddock, Virginia, had an explosive game. The quarterback completed 35 of 45 passes and gained 405 passing yards with a touchdown. He also rushed for 51 yards and had a rushing touchdown. Nebrich also broke a Patriot League record of completing his first 20 passes in the game, as well as tying a National Collegiate Athletic Association  Football Championship Subdivision record for most consecutive pass completions to start a game.

Although the offense had an electric game, head coach Jim Moorhead definitely wanted to see improvements. “We’re very excited to get to 7-0 for the first time since 1930,” Moorhead said to Fordham Sports after the game. “I thought we came out and started fast but we didn’t finish strong, especially on offense. I think the defense did an excellent job keeping Georgetown out of the end zone but offensively we had some miscues that didn’t allow us to capitalize on all of our chances.”

The Rams’ offense will get a chance to come back strong when they play the Yale University Bulldogs at the Yale Bowl on Saturday Oct. 19 at noon. Yale is currently 3-1 and Fordham is hoping to go 8-0 for the first time in almost a century.