Ewing, NJ ….. Senior running back Justin Doniloski (Rockaway, NJ/Morris Hills) rushed for a career-high 165 yards and a touchdown as The College of New Jersey football team collected a 35-24 home win over William Paterson University under the lights at Lions’ Stadium.
Doniloski carried the ball a season-high 28 times and eclipsed the 100-yard plateau for the fourth time this season. The senior raised his season total to 829 yards. He also led the team with 11 receptions for 76 yards.
For the second straight game senior quarterback Daniel Dugan (Clark, NJ/Arthur L. Johnson) put his name in TCNJ’s record book setting a new mark for passing yards in a season. He finished with 298 yards on 30-of-45 attempts giving him 2,010 on year, breaking the old mark of Pete Harteveld (1,936) set in 1997.
TCNJ led 21-14 at the half and a field goal by the Pioneers trimmed that deficit to 21-17 with 5:08 left in the third quarter.
Dugan then helped the Lions take their biggest lead of the game with a pair of touchdown passes early in the fourth quarter. His first was a 14-yard strike to Nicholas Tyson (Freehold, NJ/Freehold Boro) and then he had a 21-yard hook-up with Glenn Grainger (Island Heights, NJ/Holmdel). That throw to Tyson proved to be the record-breaker. A pair of PATs by Derick Hughes (Robbinsville, NJ/Robbinsville) gave the Lions a 35-17.
William Paterson did make it interesting when quarterback Ryan Gresik (Newton, NJ/Newton) hit Mick Paye (Lumberton, NJ/Rancocas Valley) over the middle and the receiver did the rest for a scoring play covering 75 yards. It was his third touchdown play of the game.
TCNJ’s defense then took care of the rest forcing the Pioneers to turn the ball over on one drive late in the fourth with their next and final possession ending when James Siracusa (New Providence, NJ/New Providence) came up with his third interception of the season.
The Lions had success early scoring on its initial possession of the game with Doniloski found a seam and scored on an 11-yard run.
TCNJ took to the ground in the second quarter for its second score with freshman Victor Scalisi (Freehold, NJ/Colts Neck) covering 13 yards for the touchdown. Each time Hughes split the uprights putting the hosts out to a 14-0 lead.
The half finished with a flurry of scoring as the team accounted for three touchdowns in the last 1:09 with all of those scores coming within a span of 53 seconds. William Paterson got the first of those when Gresik connected with Paye for an eight-yard touchdown. That score capped a 91-yard drive and made the score 14-7 after the point after kicked by Robert Sinegra (Wharton, NJ/Morris Knolls).
TCNJ came right back with a big counter punch and that came thanks to Matthew Chierici (Towaco, NJ/Montville) as he fielded the ensuing kickoff at his own nine and then raced 91 yards for a touchdown. Hughes booted the point after as TCNJ forged ahead, 21-7.
The Pioneers had one final push with Gresik again being the catalyst. This time Gresik completed a 19-yard touchdown pass to Julian Frazier (Plainfield, NJ/North Plainfield). Sinegra then sent the teams into the half with TCNJ holding a 21-14 lead.
Gresik finished with 353 passing yards on 28-of-52 attempts, while Paye had a big game with 151 receiving yards on nine catches.
On the defensive side of the ball for William Paterson, Clifton Glaze (Palmyra, NJ/Palmyra) had 14 tackles and German Decena (Union City, NJ/Emerson) collected 13.
For the Lions, senior Greg Burns (Hamilton, NJ/Hamilton West) had a team-high nine tackles, while Chierici also added an interception.
TCNJ closes out the road portion of its schedule next weekend heading to Morrisville State University on Saturday, 3 at noon, while the Pioneers return home to face SUNY Cortland at 1 p.m.