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Mustangs fall 26-17 to Red Dragons in conference opener

CORTLAND, N.Y. – SUNY Cortland junior quarterback, Dan Pitcher (Cortland, NY) threw for 233 yards and added 98 yards on the ground to lead the Red Dragons to the 26-17 New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) win over Morrisville State College Saturday afternoon in Cortland.

Pitcher gave the Red Dragons the early 7-0 lead at 11:26 in the first quarter, carrying the ball 68 yards for the score, capping off a three play, 70-yard drive. Minutes later, Morrisville State drove the ball 71-yards as Jamieson Crast (Mannsville, NY) found Sean Barrett (Hopewell Junction, NY) for the four-yard passing score to even the contest at seven.

With 5:33 to go in the quarter, Pitcher found receiver Eric Hajnos (Grand Island, NY) for the 31-yard passing score, as Cortland regained the seven point lead.

Cliff Hanratty (Northport, NY) pulled the Mustangs within four of the Red Dragons, hitting a 37-yard field goal with just 40 seconds remaining before the half.

In the third, Anthony Giuliano (Thornwood, NY) added two scores for Cortland, extending their lead to 26-10, the first a seven-yard scoring run just 19 seconds into the quarter and the second a 13-yard passing touchdown from Pitcher with just 11 seconds left.

Morrisville State was able to pull within nine with a five-yard rushing score by Peter Enriquez (Staten Island, NY) with 5:43 to go, but couldn’t get any closer as Cortland recorded the win.

Pitcher connected on 19-of-27 passes, and threw an interception, racking up 233 yards and two scores, while leading all ball carriers with 98 yards and a score. Hajnos led the Red Dragons receiving corps with six catches for 88 yards and a touchdown as Cortland racked up 419 yards offense on the afternoon.

Evan Wyler (Warwick, NY) led Cortland’s defensive unit with 12 total tackles, including 1.5 sacks for a loss of 16 yards. James Lenhart (Ticonderoga, NY) added 10 total tackles, two sacks for a loss of 16 yards, as the Red Dragons held Morrisville State to just 249 yards total offense.

Crast was 21-for-30 in passing on the afternoon for Morrisville State, throwing 197-yards for a score. On the ground, Maurice Mitchelson (Bronx, NY) tallied 64 yards on 16 carries while Enriquez added 22 on six carries and a score. Kyle Gordon (Riverhead, NY) and Joe Shue (Fulton, NY) led the Mustangs receiving unit, combining for 90 total yards on nine catches.

Anthony Brown (Rochester, NY) recorded nine total tackles, eight solo, and Sean McDaniel (Rome, NY) eight tackles, forcing a fumble and breaking up a pass to lead the Mustangs defensive unit. Tommy Moyon (Woodside, NY) had five tackles and recorded the game’s lone interception, returning the ball 28 yards.

Morrisville State (0-2, 0-1 NJAC) returns to the field Saturday, traveling to Montclair State University for a 1 p.m. kickoff in Montclair, New Jersey.

Morrisville State begins active membership within the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), Division III in 2009-10 and is eligible for NCAA Championship Tournament play.

Morrisville State College offers more than 75 bachelor and associate degrees and options. Considered to be one of the most technologically advanced colleges in the nation for its ThinkPad University program and wireless technology initiative, the college recently became the first in the nation to comprehensively replace landlines in residence halls with individual cellular phones. Morrisville State College was also chosen as one of the top five colleges in the nation for campus activities by Campus Activities magazine.

The Morrisville State College Norwich Campus offers associate degree programs in accounting, business, computer systems technology, office administration, liberal arts transfer, nursing, early childhood, criminal justice and human services to south central New York residents and employers. Students may also apply coursework to other associate or bachelor degrees at the main campus.