Zachary Grace | Staff Writer
Duquesne’s football team recorded yet another lopsided victory, beating NEC foe Saint Francis 24-7 on Oct. 21.
“I think the offensive line played really well, as well as the backs and the receivers blocking downfield,” said Dukes quarterback Tommy Stuart. “Definitely a total team effort today. The defense only gave up 7 points. We’re definitely building every week and trying to get better every week,” Stuart continued.
One aspect of Stuart’s game that goes potentially unappreciated is his ability to make plays when flushed out of the pocket.
“I don’t know, that’s been my style of play for a long time now,” Stuart said. “Kind of sitting back in the pocket, I’m able to do some things, and then when I get out of the pocket, I’ve kind of been able to do some things. I’ve just been doing it for a long time now, so I’m pretty used to it.”
Stuart has accounted for at least two touchdowns in every game this season, and completed 15 of 22 passing attempts versus the Red Flash, including a rushing touchdown and a 21-yard scoring pass, caught by wide receiver Chavas Rawlins.
Members of the offensive line were the unsung heroes of the game per usual, as the Dukes produced 235 total rushing yards. Two beneficiaries of the offensive line’s effort were running backs P.J. Fulmore and A.J. Hines. Fulmore scored one rushing touchdown on 14 carries for 68 yards, while Hines eclipsed the 100-yard mark, gaining 123 yards on 28 carries.
Duquesne’s defense played outstanding, as they forced three turnovers and only surrendered 7 points. Turnovers came via interceptions by cornerback Brandon Stanback and linebacker Carter Henderson, and Jonathant Istache ran for 35 yards on a fumble recovery.
Now 6-1, Duquesne is 3-0 in the NEC. Riding a six-game winning streak, the Dukes head to Fairfield, Connecticut, where they will face Sacred Heart (3-4, 1-1) on Oct. 28 at 12 p.m.
Following Saturday’s effort against Saint Francis, Hines was named the NEC Co-Offensive Player of the Week alongside Central Connecticut State tailback Drew Jean-Guillaume, who ran for 152 yards and a touchdown and caught an additional three passes for 25 yards against Bryant.
Following a 31-14 victory over Bryant on Oct. 21, Central Connecticut State (5-3, 3-0) is tied atop the NEC standings with Duquesne.
After Oct. 28’s game at Sacred Heart, the Dukes will play at Liberty, a member of the Big South Conference who is transitioning to FBS, on Nov. 4, before returning to Pittsburgh to face Central Connecticut State in a potentially pivotal game on Nov. 11 at 12 p.m. in the Dukes’ last home game of the year.
Duquesne will conclude its 2017 regular-season in Smithfield, Rhode Island at Bryant’s Bulldog Stadium on Nov. 18.