Union, N.J. (9/12/15) – The Kean University football team used a second quarter surge to power past Bridgewater State University by the final of 47-21 in the season opener for the Cougars on Saturday afternoon.
Junior Tyler Rodriguez led the offense with four total touchdowns as he tallied 190 yards on 10 completions with another 86 yards on the ground as the Cougars (1-0) won their first season opener since 2011.
Pinned at their own one yard line on a great punt from Nick Cidado, the Cougars used a nine yard gain off a reception from Tyler Hopman up the middle to get some breathing room. It was Hopman again at the end of the drive with a 31 yard catch putting Kean in the red zone. After a penalty backed Kean up, Rodriguez scampered 20 yards for the first TD of the day.
The Bears got on the board using a drive that spanned quarters as sophomore Alex McLaughlin capped a 16 play, 63 yard drive with a 16 yard run, tying the game at seven-all.
In the second quarter, Rodriguez used a 17 yard pickup putting Kean near midfield before junior Damian Corredor broke numerous tackles near the bench area and tip-toed his way down the sideline for a 60 yard dash and with the point-after, a 14-7 lead.
The defense held the Bears (1-1) deep in their own territory on the ensuing drive and after bad punt the Cougars found themselves with the best field position of the day at the Bridgewater 27 yard line. Rodriguez (pictured left) paced the offense down the field and he finished the drive with a three yard run to put Kean on top, 20-7.
Junior Austin Davis ended the half with his second interception of the day, to end any scoring chance for the Bears heading into the break.
Both teams traded scores in the third quarter and the Cougars sealed the deal with two more TDs in the final stanza including a 41 yard scamper from Kyree Tyson-Jones.
Offensively, Corredor finished with 122 yards and two touchdowns with Johnson recording 116 yards on four catches. Defensively Robert Meade III led all players with 14 total tackles including a forced fumble, breakup and one and a half tackles for a loss. Junior Stephan Lewis registered nine tackles with a breakup and junior Tom Winters provided eight tackles, a sack and two tackles for a loss.
For the Bears, quarterback Danny Higgins had 66 yards on the ground and 55 in the air with a TD. On defense, sophomore Kyle Dance registered a 41 yard interception for a touchdown with five tackles and a breakup.
Kean travels to The College of New Jersey to open up their NJAC slate next Saturday for a noon kickoff.