Solomon Leads Fitchburg State in Tough Loss to Castleton
FITCHBURG -- Jacqua Solomon rushed for 175 yards and a touchdown for the Fitchburg State University football team, but the hosts were unable to hold Castleton University’s potent offense in check in Saturday’s 34-14 non-conference setback at Elliot Field.
Castleton opened the scoring with seven minutes remaining in the first quarter when, shortly after senior linebacker Grant Cummings’ interception gave the visitors the ball at the FSU 35, senior quarterback Mitchell Caron ran in from 1 yard out for an early 6-0 lead.
The Falcons evened the score 6-6 with 39 seconds remaining in the first frame when Jacqua Solomon broke free up the middle for a 24-yard touchdown. However, the Spartans regained the lead as time expired in the quarter as sophomore running back Matthew Hesford hauled in a 65-yard pass from Caron to make the score 12-6 at the end of one.
Fitchburg State (0-2) took a 13-12 lead midway through the second quarter as freshman quarterback Brandon Brown rumbled in from 9 yards out. Brown had an impressive day in defeat, completing 11 of 23 passes for 138 yards, while running for 110 yards and a score.
The Spartans, however, took the lead for good with a Moe Harris 4-yard TD run for a 20-13 lead heading into intermission.
Castleton (1-1) added a pair of touchdowns in the second half to extend the lead. With the Falcons in the red zone, sophomore defensive lineman Chris Rice intercepted a tipped ball at the line and returned it 80 yards for a touchdown. Not long after, a 17-yard touchdown reception by wide receiver Damon Burgess capped the scoring.
Playing well on the defensive side for Fitchburg State was Caleb Gonsalves, who finished with a team-best 7.5 total tackles. Punter Bryce Santos averaged 37.0 yards per punt on four attempts.
Castleton was led by Caron who finished 12 of 26 for 250 yards and two touchdowns. Wide receiver Jared Brockway had three catches for 80 yards.
Up next, Fitchburg State will host Worcester State on Saturday at 2 p.m., while Castleton will travel to Norwich for a 2 p.m. kickoff.