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— story and pictures by Patrick Magoon (patrickmagoon.com) of WIZS — Patrick Magoon is a recent UNC-C communications graduate looking to build his sports portfolio by writing and taking photos for WIZS
Before kickoff on Saturday, September 14, the Massachusetts Minutemen (UMass) led 1-0 in series play against the Charlotte 49ers. UMass dominated the 49ers in the first quarter of last season’s meeting, outscoring them 28-0. Several months later, the 49ers got their revenge.
The 49ers wasted no time putting points on the scoreboard. In the opening minutes of the second quarter, the 49ers took a 28-0 lead over the Minutemen. Charlotte’s electrifying, confident offensive unit kept up the intensity, outpacing the Minutemen and piecing together an impressive stat sheet.
Superior blocking on special teams and reliable run blocking schemes paved the way for several highlight-worthy plays executed by some young talents. In total, the 49ers scored 52 points, accumulated 533 yards from scrimmage and rushed for a season-high 338 yards.
Charlotte’s defense demonstrated excellent speed off the line and intelligent positioning, limiting Minutemen’s Andrew Brito to 127 yards and forcing an interception. Brito was forced to get rid of the ball quickly as Charlotte’s defensive line continuously pushed him out of his comfort zone. The unit’s ability to consistently evade blockers resulted in an exciting five-sack performance.
With solid performances coming from the dynamic duo of Chris Reynolds (10-of-12 passing for 155 yards) and running back Benny LeMay (113 yards), the 49ers have now scored 40-plus points in back-to-back-to-back games and lead C-USA in total offense.
Up next, the 49ers will travel south to face Clemson, who is fresh off a stunning 49-6 win on the road.
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