By Thomas Scavetta
Assistant Sports Editor
After leading comfortably 37-20, with less than three minutes remaining, the LIU Post football team suffered its first loss of the season in dramatic fashion to NE-10 rival, Stonehill College, 40-37, on Saturday, Sept. 26, in Brookville, N.Y.
The Pioneers (3-1) dominated throughout the first three-and-a-half quarters, until the Skyhawks (4-0) scored 20 unanswered points in the final 2:13 of the contest. The visitors completed the miracle come-from-behind-win with a 41-yard Hail Mary touchdown as the game-clock expired.
One of the upsides for the Pioneers was red-shirt freshman running back, Malik Pierre. Pierre had a monster game, rushing for 238 yards and three touchdowns on 33 carries. Throughout the game, Pierre consistently picked up huge chunks of yardage. Pierre’s longest run of the game was a 64- yard scamper down to the Stonehill 1-yard line. On the following play, he finished the job with a 1-yard score, giving LIU a 17-6 lead midway through the third quarter.
Junior quarterback Jeff Kidd and the Pioneers offense staged two impressive touchdown drives to gain a commanding 30-6 advantage with 1:17 left in the third period. Kidd fired two touchdown passes; one to red-shirt junior wide-out Shane Hubbard and the other to senior tight end, Sean Binckes.
From that point on, things went downhill for the hosts. The Skyhawks answered back immediately with a touchdown, making it a 30-13 game heading into the fourth quarter. Miscues on offense for the Green and Gold resulted in a momentum swing as Stonehill quietly came within ten points at the 9:50 mark of the final period. LIU would tack on another touchdown, but the visitors kept the wheels moving as they soared down the field for a quick touchdown with just 1:02 to go.
After an unfortunate turn of events, the Pioneers found themselves reeling as Stonehill’s prayers were answered, scoring two touchdowns in the final ten ticks of the contest. Post was stunned as the visitors got the last laugh. Freshman Skyhawk quarterback, Matt Foltz, hoisted a bomb that was corralled in by junior receiver, Corey White, on the final play of the game.
Kidd and the offense struggled as he only completed 11-of-25 for 128 yards throwing two touchdowns and one interception. He was also sacked three times. Hubbard led the pack with 55 receiving yards on three receptions and one score.
Defensively, junior defensive back Clarence Sears stood out with seven tackles, one interception and one pass break-up. Red-shirt sophomore defensive lineman Anthony DeNunzio totaled four tackles, two sacks, and forced a fumble. Sophomore defensive lineman, Kevin Petit-Frere, also chipped in with five stops, 1.5 sacks and a pass deflection.
Head Coach Bryan Collins and the Pioneers look to rebound from a tough loss as they travel to Springfield, MA to take on their Northeast-10 arch rival, American International College on Saturday, Oct. 3. Kickoff is scheduled for noon.