The Montclair State University football team had a tough time putting up points against Salisbury in Saturday’s matchup. They were defeated by a final score of 31-12, as the Red Hawks just looked outmatched all day.
Salisbury opened up the scoring early with a 42-yard punt return and jumped out to an early 7- 0 lead. Shortly after that, the woes continued as Montclair State fumbled the football, giving it right back to Salisbury. They wasted little time and punched in another touchdown on the run by Senior Joey Bildstein.
Points piled up on the board for Salisbury, but the Red Hawks would not go into halftime empty handed. With 57 seconds left on the clock, Montclair State scored their first touchdown of the game on a pass play to fifth year wide receiver Clarence Wilkins.
The Red Hawks were seeking momentum and needed to bring the energy if they wanted to overcome a 24-6 deficit in the back half of this game. Despite showing a lot of fights, nothing seemed to be going their way as it was more of the same from Montclair State in the second half. Salisbury never looked back once they took the lead early on.
“The biggest thing we did wrong today was we let them get an early lead,” Head coach Mike Palazzo said. “When you get into a 17-0 hole it is hard to come back from, especially against a triple option school. It’s very hard to come back when you’re down because they could just pound the ball.”
That is exactly what Salisbury did as they continued to establish their dominance over the Red Hawks. It was not until the final minutes of the game that Montclair State put up another touchdown, but by that point it was too little too late.
It would have been a huge win for the Red Hawks on Saturday considering the long history of matches against Salisbury University. The last time that Montclair State beat them was in 2006, so it’s safe to say that they were due for a win. This team still has a lot to learn from and improve upon as the season progresses according to Palazzo.
“It’s the first year in doing some of the things we are doing so we have to continue to build,” Palazzo said. “I think that it showed today that we are still a little young and we still aren’t experienced in certain spots. We continue to build and we are gonna get better and better as we go on here.”
There is still a lot of season left and a bright future ahead of them. The men have proven time and time again that they have a non-quit attitude, wanting to take this program to the next level. Another opportunity arises next weekend as the Red Hawks are on the road against William Paterson University.
“Every week is a championship week,” Palazzo said. “We do not look past anything and we do not care about what the record is. It is just we got to win the week and that is what starts on Monday.”