Sept. 21, 2013
Villanova is 22-7 (.759) in home openers under head coach Andy Talley and with tonight's victory has now won six of its last seven home openers. In addition the Wildcats are also 19-7 (.731) under Talley in conference openers.
Tonight's game was the first of the season against a nationally-ranked opponent for Villanova. Last season the Wildcats were 2-2 versus ranked teams, with both of the victories coming against top-10 squads (No. 3 Old Dominion, No. 9 James Madison).
This afternoon's game was a rematch of a first round playoff game last season, in which Stony Brook hosted the Wildcats and came away with a 20-10 victory to advance to the second round of the FCS playoffs. That contest was the first-ever meeting in football between the two schools.
Through the first two games of the 2013 season Villanova had committed nine turnovers while forcing just three. In today's game the Wildcats committed zero turnovers and forced two turnovers by the Seawolves. Villanova turned both of the Stony Brook turnovers into touchdowns to help pull away for the win.
Villanova entered today's contest coming off of a bye week. In their last 11 games following a bye the Wildcats are 10-2 (.833).
Sophomore quarterback John Robertson (Paramus, N.J.) rushed for over 100 yards for the first time this season and the fourth time in his career. Robertson ran 20 times for 119 yards and a touchdown in today's game and finished the day with 259 yards of total offense.
Junior running back Austin Medley (Franklinville, N.J.) broke away for a career-long 57-yard run at the end of the first quarter. His run moved the ball from the Villanova 39-yard line to the Seawolves 4-yard line and set up the Wildcats first touchdown of the game. Medley's previous career long rush was 38 yards against Fordham last season (Sept. 8, 2012).
Senior defensive end Rakim Cox (San Diego, Calif.) blocked the point-after attempt after a Stony Brook touchdown in the fourth quarter. It was the second career blocked kick for Cox, whose first came on a field goal attempt against Maine last season (Sept. 29, 2012).
Villanova has had a double digit tackler in each of the first three games this season, with senior cornerback Craig James (Mays Landing, N.J.) leading the way today with 10 tackles. Last season there were only two games all season (out of 12 contests) in which at least one Wildcat registered double digits in tackles.
The 36-yard fumble recovery for a touchdown by junior safety Joe Sarnese (Ventnor, N.J.) in the third quarter was the second defensive touchdown in as many games for Villanova. In the team's last outing (against Fordham on Sept. 7), junior safety Jerry Miles (Dublin, Ohio) returned an interception for a touchdown. Last season the Wildcats only had three defensive touchdowns the entire season, although two of them came in one game (in the regular season finale against Delaware on Nov. 17, 2012).