Big Red Hawks second half defeats Lions

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

EWING — The College of New Jersey Lions football team looked much improved following their bye. The Lions; however, fell for the fifth straight time this season.

The Lions were defeated 21-17 by the Montclair State Red Hawks at Lions Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Trevor Osler (Getty Images)

Trevor Osler (Getty Images)

TCNJ has lost six straight games, dating back to last season. They are presently 0-5 and they are 0-4 within the New Jersey Athletic Conference.

The Red Hawks are 3-2 on the season. They are 3-1 within the NJAC.

Montclair State used a second half surge in the third quarter to win the game. Red Hawks quarterback John Apicella, who went 13 of 28 for 182 yards, had two touchdowns.

Apicella first completed a seven-yard touchdown to Brian Kowalczyk at 8:36 in the quarter to cut the lead to 17-14. Then, with 2:02 left in the quarter, he hit Willie Barr for a 40-yard touchdown for a 21-17 lead.

The Lions had a late attempt to tie the game. However, that drive, with less than two minutes left in the game, sputtered following a fumble by quarterback Trevor Osler. Then, on 4th and 14, the game basically was over when Julius Ray Garvin intercepted Osler in the end zone.

The Red Hawks ran out the clock from there.

Right before halftime, the Lions took a 17-7 lead. Zachary Pharo made a 40-yard field goal with eight seconds left in the first half.

The Red Hawks got close when Barr scored on a 26-yard run. His score cut the Lions lead to 14-7. Barr had 56 rushing yards and 40 receiving yards, along with his two touchdowns.

The Lions had to rely heavily on their passing game. Connor Owen had just four rushing yards and the team, as a whole, had -28 yards. Osler went 22 of 44 for career-high 308 yards, along with two touchdowns and two interceptions.

Wide receiver Thomas Koenig had a big first quarter for the Lions. Koenig, who had 181 yards, caught two touchdowns.

He first caught an 80-yard reception at 11:59 in the quarter for the early 7-0 lead. Them, at 8:21, he caught a seven-yard reception for the 14-0 lead.

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