The high-powered West Chester University offense exploded for a season-high 45 points in Saturday’s routing of Seton Hill University, 45-10.
Leading the way, as he has all season, Sean McCartney threw for 261 yards along with three touchdowns. These three touchdowns helped McCartney reach a career milestone, passing the 60-TD mark for his career at West Chester.
Through the first two weeks of the season, McCartney has dominated the pocket. His offensive weapons are dynamic and always changing. Saturday, it was senior wide out Erick Brundidge’s turn. Brundidge caught six passes for 166 yards while reeling in three touchdowns. Touchdown strikes all came through the air from McCartney, with one coming from 81 yards out. The other two came from within 40 yards.
Brundidge has been a dominant end zone threat for the Rams for the past two years. In the 2013 season, Brundidge made noise at the receiver position through the whole PSAC conference, hauling in 46 passes for 759 yards and a team high of 10 touchdowns. Brundidge is widely known as one of the most lethal deep threats in the PSAC.
Saturday, Brundidge surely set the tone. Early in the second quarter, with West Chester already on top 10-0, Brundidge caught a quick pass from McCartney, and with a few quick moves, he was gone. Brundidge took the ball 81 yards down field for his first, but not close to last, touchdown of the game.
Brundidge would strike for the second time with just one minute to play in the first half. Another late fourth quarter score gave him his third touchdown.
Tight end Shawn Driggins tacked on the first receiving touchdown for the Rams in the first quarter. Suprisingly, this pass came from backup quarterback Andrew Derr, not McCartney.
After McCartney took a tough sack, Derr got the call for a few plays and he certainly made the most out of his opportunity. He ran the ball four times, collecting 50 yards on the ground, while also going 2-4 from the pocket for 67 yards. Derr has shown his strength at the quarterback position, which is great for a Rams fan to see when thinking of the post-McCartney era.
Running back Brandon Monk eclipsed the 100-yard mark for a game for the first time this season, rushing for 101 yards on 11 carries. Following his lead came Jarel Elder and Eddie Elliot, rushing for 74 yards on 20 combined carries.
Monk found the end zone early in the second half for his first and only score of the game. McCartney handed the ball off and let the elusive Monk do what he does best. Finding a gap in the defense, all Monk needed was a few seconds to make Seton Hill pay. A 40-yard touch down tacked on more for the Rams, along with an extremely successful game for the Golden Rams rushing attack.
On the defensive side of the ball, seniors Ronnell Williams and Mike Labor continued to mark their territory as one of the most dominant linebacker cores in the conference. Williams secured nine tackles while Labor added eight, each completely stuffing any attempt at a rushing attack from Seton Hill.
Despite the pre-season hype of Williams as an All-American, Labor has shown himself to be just as dominant on Saturday afternoons so far this season. Labor leads the team with 26 tackles on the season, Williams not far behind with 23. Perhaps when December rolls around we will see two West Chester linebackers looking at All-American oppurtunities.
The West Chester defensive back core had a relatively quiet day. Between two quarterbacks, Seton Hill managed to only throw for a combined 142 yards on 32 attempts.
Senior kicker Rich Bruno was the first player to put West Chester on the board on Saturday night. Bruno split the uprights early in the first from 32 yards out to give the Rams their first lead, which they never lost.
Bruno has been consistent for the Rams all season, going 2-3 on field goals. Along with kicking, Bruno has also been punting all season for the Rams. With a 36.23 yard average, Bruno has filled a role at punter that is a huge part of the momentum of a football game.
It was a quiet day for offensive stars Tim Brown and Mike Doty, both catching only one pass. Make no mistake, they will both be back on McCartneys radar when Saturday arrives.
After their 3-0 start to the season, West Chester will now begin to see some more talented teams. This upcoming weekend, the Rams will host Millersville University at 6 p.m. located at John A. Farrell stadium. Despite Millersville’s struggles through some of the previous seasons, this is still a game the Rams will not look past.
In the upcoming weeks, WCU will face Lock Haven University, Shippensburg University and Bloomsburg, all extremely tough games. With their determination and flat-out talent, the Rams will continue trying to accomplish complete domination of the PSAC.
In the beginning of the season, Coach Swaan stressed the idea of taking the season one game at a time. So far, the Rams have done exactly that. Each game has shown a different aspect of this Golden Rams team, whether it be a strong defensive effort, a breakout wide reciever, or the leadership and poise of McCartney under-center. Whatever the case may be, West Chester looks to have a goal in heir sight, and nothing can stop them.
AJ Arcaini is a third-year student majoring in communication studies with a minor in journalism. He can be reached at AA788494@wcupa.edu