Cats mauls Bears to go 4-1

Ryan Angco

Villanova football won all four games it played in the month of September, picking up a big conference victory over Maine, 35-14. The 'Cats haven't lost since week 1 against Temple and are hoping to ride their streak further.


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Villanova started quickly, running five plays after getting the kickoff to start the game ending with a 28-yard touchdown pass from freshman quarterback John Robertson to senior receiver Norman White. Maine responded with a quick touchdown on their first possession, but that was it for the Black Bears' offense until a score in the fourth quarter after the result was no longer in doubt. The Wildcats took a 21-7 lead into the half and won the game 35-14.

The 'Cats turned the ball over for the first time since week one as John Robertson picked up his first career interception in the first quarter. Despite the error, the defense took the field and managed to hold the Maine defense to a long field goal attempt that was partially blocked to keep the score even.

The Wildcats' offense was lead by Kevin Monangai, who had the most rushing yards in a single game, with 192, since Brian Westbrook set the record 11 years ago. He did it with 30 carries because despite Austin Medley being suited up for the game, the coaching staff limited him and Gary Underwood's touches, effectively making Monangai the feature-back for the second week in a row. The sophomore tailback scored twice to lead the offense.

Aaron Wells also had 3 runs for 51 yards in his first real game action of the year.

John Robertson gained over 100 yards rushing, but his total was reduced significantly by a loss incurred when a bad snap went over his head, forcing him to fall on the ball well behind the line of scrimmage. He ended the game with 14 rushes for 79 yards (an average of 5.6) and a touchdown. Robertson also threw for 128 yards, completing 11 of his 17 attempts (64.7%) and might have thrown more if Villanova hadn't built such a commanding lead by halftime. Robertson had two passing touchdowns in the game, his first time with more than one this season.

Both Norman White (4 receptions, 51 yards) and Joe Price (3 receptions, 43 yards) were beneficiaries of Robertson's arm, with each of them finding the endzone in the first quarter.

The Villanova defense did a tremendous job holding back the Maine attack. The Black Bears struggled to get across midfield, for much of the game, and were held scoreless for about 46 minutes after their initial touchdown. Maine quarterback Marcus Wasilewski was sacked 7 times as the Villanova front-seven was able to force their way into the backfield throughout the game.

Wasilewski was also picked off twice, once by safety Shane Harris in the first quarter and again on their first drive of the fourth quarter, as Eric Loper reached up and grabbed a pass at the Villanova 38 yard line.

Maine had 409 passing yards against a Villanova defense that came into the game ranked 3rd in the nation against the pass. Despite that, they were held to a paltry 11 yards on the ground — they gained more, but Wasilewski recorded a negative-24 yard rushing day after the Nova defense consistently knocked him to the ground.

The Wildcats move to 4-1 on the season with the victory, and 2-0 in CAA conference play.

They will look for a 5th-consecutive win next weekend when they host Richmond. The Spiders are coming off of a 45-37 loss at home to Old Dominion, whose record-setting quarterback Taylor Heineke managed to throw for over 300 yards in the game. Richmond came on strong late to try and rally for a comeback-win, but the Monarchs were too strong to overcome.

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