STEVENS POINT, Wis. – Senior Christian Almonte (Menomonee Falls, Wis./Menomonee Falls) hauled in two of quarterback Matt Urmanski’s (Edgar, Wis./Edgar) three touchdown passes, but the UW-Stevens Point football team (0-1) came up short in a 45-21 defeat to John Carroll University (1-0) in head coach Greg Breitbach’s debut with the Pointers.
Urmanski threw for 302 yards and the three touchdowns. He completed 29 of 55 passing attempts, but threw three interceptions.
The Pointers turned the ball over six times. In addition to three interceptions, UWSP lost all three fumbles on the day.
Almonte was his primary target with a team-high eight receptions, including the two touchdowns. He led UWSP with 80 yards receiving and 151 all-purpose yards.
Sonny Soquet (Brussels, Wis./Southern Door) and Steve Herra (Rockford, Ill./Boylan) had six receptions each. Soquet recorded 60 yards and Herra 45 on the day.
UWSP’s run game was limited to just 79 yards. Zach Bosek (Sandwich, Ill./Sandwich Community) and Urmanski had 26 net yards each.
Senior Ryan Strick (Naperville, Ill./Waubonsie Valley) led the defense with nine tackles. Fellow seniors Omarri Johnson (Milwaukee, Wis./Riverside) and Juleyan Givens (Bolingbrook, Ill./Plainfield East) added seven takedowns apiece.
JCU opened the scoring in the first quarter on a three-play drive following a UWSP turnover and penalty. Two passes and a rush completed the 21-yard drive.
Midway through the second quarter, the Blue Streaks doubled their lead. Five plays, including two long rushes, was all JCU needed to go 79 yards.
On the ensuing possession, Urmanski completed four-of-five passes, including a 17-yard strike to Almonte to get UWSP on the board. The point-after attempt was blocked as UWSP trailed 14-6.
JCU found the end zone again on the next possession. Three completions spanned 75 yards and gave the Blue Streaks a 21-6 halftime lead.
The Pointers caused a fumble on a punt and recovered deep in JCU territory. The momentum of the turnover saw Urmanski hit Almonte for a 23-yard touchdown on the next play to draw the Pointers within 21-14.
JCU settled for a field goal and added a late touchdown to send the game to the fourth with a 31-14 score.
Urmanski completed seven passes on the next UWSP possession that spanned into the fourth. He hit Jahi Stigall (Chicago, Ill./DePaul College Prep) from three yards out to complete the 12-play, 77-yard drive for a touchdown.
The Blue Streaks added two more touchdowns later in the fourth to put the game away.
UWSP head to Crawfordsville, Ind., next Saturday (Sept. 8) to take on Wabash College. Kick off is slated for 1:00 p.m. ET.