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UNH falls short at Albany

In their final road trip of 2019, Ricky Santos and the Wildcats (5-5, 4-3) went into Albany (7-4, 5-2), but didn’t have enough to overcome a fourth quarter deficit. Now sitting at .500 with one game to go, UNH can likely forget about any shot of reaching the playoffs this season. 

The Great Danes struck first following a fourth-and-four conversion deep in Wildcat territory. Junior running back Karl Mofor brought his team inside the 10-yard line on the fourth down reception. The running back also capped off the first scoring drive of the afternoon, punching it in from six yards out to capture the early 7-0 lead. 

First year quarterback Max Brosmer wouldn’t keep his team trailing for long, however. Redshirt first year wide receiver Dylan Laube set up the offense nicely with a 27-yard return off the kickoff. Two receptions from Brosmer to Laube helped the offense move downfield on this series. Senior running back Evan Gray ended the drive on two consecutive rushes, tying the game at seven. 

Brosmer continued to pick apart the Albany defense at the start of the second quarter – passing for 60 yards on the series. A pair of 22-yard receptions from Laube and senior wideout Malik Love brought Brosmer into position to rush for the 14-yard touchdown.  

Laube had 70 receiving yards on nine catches, which led the way for all Wildcats. 

On the ensuing UNH drive, Albany senior safety Josh Wynn intercepted Brosmer, giving his offense a short field to tie the game. Mofor continued to get it done in all aspects as he caught a 22-yard pass and rushed for 16-yards into the end zone on consecutive plays. 

The Danes had some help as the wind disrupted the kickoff, helping the home team recover their own kick. First year quarterback Jeff Undercuffler took over from the UNH 28-yard line and went right back to Mofor. The running back rushed for 12 yards on the first two plays of the drive. A 40-yard field goal from junior Dylan Burns pushed his side ahead once more, 17-14. 

No team would score again until the fourth quarter, when the Wildcat offense kept Albany guessing. Sophomore running back Carlos Washington Jr. rushed for 28 yards on the drive, Brosmer ran for 35 and threw for 18. Junior kicker Jason Hughes tied the game at 17 with a 34-yard field goal. 

Brosmer led the way in the run game with 47 yards, Washington Jr. close behind with 46 on 11 carries. The young quarterback also completed 19-for-32 passes good for 142 yards, also throwing two picks. 

Undercuffler and Mofor would put away the Wildcats shortly after the Hughes field goal. Three straight rushes by Mofor put Undercuffler in position for three straight completions to give his side the lead. Redshirt-freshman Tyler Oedekoven’s 32-yard receiving touchdown secured the win for the Danes. 

Undercuffler finished the day throwing for 199 yards, completing 16-of-27 passes with one touchdown. 

Mofor paced the ground game for both teams and rushed for more than Brosmer and Washington Jr. combined. The back ended with 107 yards and two scores. 

UNH suffering their fifth loss of 2019 all but shuts the door on playoff hopes for the rookie head coach and quarterback. 

Ricky Santos didn’t seem concerned when asked about the team’s slim playoff hopes heading into the final game. 

“The motivation of this game kind of takes care of itself. We’re not worried about that glimmer of hope we have to go to the playoffs; we’re just trying to put some pieces together and get better this week.” 

In their 11th and final game of 2019, UNH will play host to the rival Maine Black Bears. Seniors like Gray, Love, and Prince Smith Jr. will look to cap their Wildcat careers with one final win on Saturday, November 23 at 1 p.m. 

“We want to send the seniors out the right way,” said Santos. “We wish all these guys the best, and they’ve done a tremendous job for our program.” 

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