Strong effort not enough as Union falls to Morehead State

Published 2:10 pm Friday, August 30, 2019

MOREHEAD — The effort was there as was the fight. Yet, it was not nearly enough as the Union College football team fell 44-7 to host Morehead State University on Thursday.

The Bulldogs open the 2019 season 0-1, while the NCAA Division I Eagles start out 1-0.


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It was a slugfest in the opening quarter with Union eating over 10 minutes of the clock on offense. However, Morehead State collected the lone score on a Mark Pappas 1-yard plunge.

The second quarter began to be played out much like the first, but midway through, the Eagles began to light up the scoreboard. A 23-yard field goal made it a 10-0 game.

With 4:04 to go, Jovan Smith punched the ball in from two yards out. Morehead State went for two, but the pass was broken up. The Eagles closed the half with a 21-yard touchdown pass to Jacob Peters for a 23-0 halftime lead.


Down 44-0, the Bulldogs finally found the end zone when Earl Wells hauled in a pass on the sideline and outpaced the entire Eagle defense for an 85-yard touchdown with 1:54 remaining in the game.

The play accounted for nearly 27 percent of Union’s total offensive output.


Union had a pair of quality scoring chances, getting the ball inside the Morehead State 10 twice. Unfortunately, the Bulldogs missed a 24-yard field late in the third and later had a pass intercepted in the end zone midway through the fourth.


Morehead State went 4-for-4 in the red zone, while Union was 0-for-3.


Wells made a pair of spectacular catches in racking up 143 receiving yards on four receptions. This was his first game playing at wide receiver as spending time last year at quarterback.

This is the first 100-yard receiving game by a Bulldog since Tyler Toombs collected 131 against St. Andrews University (N.C.) on Oct. 13, 2018.


“I’m disappointed, obviously, with the outcome,” said head coach Andre Linn. “I feel like we are a much better team than we showed. We had some execution misses and drive killers on offense and a couple of missteps in the secondary – which you get in the first game of the year. But we didn’t quit on defense; kept fighting, and that was something I was proud of.”


Union is now 0-10 in games against NCAA Division I opponents. This was the first game against an NCAA Division I squad since 2014 when Union visited Murray State University (Ky.).

The 37-point margin is the closest Union has been in any of the games versus Division I opponents. The previous best was 38 when the Bulldogs fell 48-10 at Wofford College (S.C.) in 2010.

Kendrick Furness completed 14-of-38 passes for 196 yards and led the team in rushing with 17 yards. Connor Marchionda went 1-for-2 in the pocket for 85 yards and a touchdown.

The yellow hankie was not kind to the Eagles, who were flagged for 19 penalties for 170 yards. Union was penalized six times for 55 yards.

Cohen Perry and Jay Brown led Union defensively with 10 total tackles apiece. Matt Mason and Jakobe Robinson each recorded a sack.

Mario Black broke up two passes, and Cornelius Andrews blocked a punt.


Union continues on the road as it visits Webber International University (Fla.) on Sept. 7. Kickoff is set for 1:30 p.m.