Annunziata finishes 5th at U.S. Nationals

Posted on 29 January 2015 by L.Moore

sports012915By Gary Curreri

Lara Annunziata is all smiles following her strong performance at the 2015 Prudential U.S. Figure Skating Championships recently in Greensboro, NC.

Annunziata, 11, of Pompano Beach, took fifth place in the Intermediate Ladies Division. She was in fourth place following her short program and took sixth in her long program to finish fifth place overall. She was hoping for a Top 5 finish entering the competition and that’s exactly what she got.

I enjoyed the experience and the other skaters I competed against were very good,” she said. “I was happy to place in the Top 5 in the nation. I skated my best, but competition was tough,” said Annunziata, who also gets good grades in school.

Annunziata plans to move up a level to the Novice Division next year and said the experience at nationals would be beneficial to her in her future.

This experience will only help me get better,” she said. “I was the youngest in this competition and I competed with girls that had been there longer than me and who were older. It was my first experience at Nationals, and it was an incredible experience!”

It capped another solid effort by the Florida Panthers Figure Skating Club member, who also placed third in the regional and fourth in the sectionals to earn her trip to nationals.

I really don’t think of anything when I am out on the ice,” said Annunziata, a Shepherd of the Coast sixth grader. “I kind of go with the fl ow. I clear my mind. It is really important to go to sectionals in my first time at this level.”

She joined teammates Sophia Chouinard, who won the national title in Juvenile Girls, and T.J. Nyman, who won the national crown in the Intermediate Men’s Division.

Bucks win district soccer title

Deerfield Beach’s Romilaire Ambroise scored the goahead goal just three minutes into the second half and the Bucks held on for a 3-2 victory over Monarch for the District 12-5A championship at West Boca High School last week.

The Bucks (19-2-4) will host Palm Beach Central in the Class 5A regional quarterfinal on Thursday at 7 p.m.

The Bucks, which lost the district title game as well as the regional quarterfinal last season, won their third district championship under head coach Frantz Edouard.

We are a more organized and disciplined team defensively this season,” said Edouard, who lost the district title game as well as the regional quarterfinal last season. It was Edouard’s third district title at the school. “We were able to put a lot of pressure on them.”

Theodore Stanley scored twice within the first 10 minutes of the game to take Deerfield Beach to a 2-0 advantage. Monarch battled back to tie the game before Ambroise gave the Bucks the lead for good — just one minute after Monarch’s Rodrigo DaSilva equalized.

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FLICKS: Timbuktu and Selma

Posted on 29 January 2015 by L.Moore

By Dave Montalbano

http://cinemadave.livejournal.com

The best thing about the awards’ season is that interesting motion pictures are being released at local theaters. Timbuktu has been nominated for best foreign language motion picture, the first entry from Mauritania, a country from the continent of Africa. Timbuktu is a beautiful motion picture, but with a depressing theme about Sharia law. Not since The Stoning of Soraya M. has a motion picture so addressed the terrors of Islamic fundamentalism.

This film opens and closes with symbolism, a group of thugs race across the desert with automatic rifles — shooting at a racing deer, most likely a doe. Moments later, the thugs use sacred relics as target practice. The tone of the film shifts to a bucolic setting of farmers and cattle ranchers.

With low-key acting, we watch a husband and wife quietly discuss the affairs of the day. While under the tent, these individuals entertain themselves with stories and the playing of musical instruments. They talk about their dreams, expectations and a better future.

Yet, in town, we witness a primitive Orwellian world. The hooded thought police troll the streets in search of neighbors violating Sharia Law. Rumors, gossip and hearsay are treated as fact in the kangaroo court of the land. This surreal environment creates a distressing situation that eventually leads to multiple tragedies between honorable people and profane sycophants.

The word “Timbuktu” evokes exotic romance. Director Abderrahmane Sissako provides these expectations with glorious cinematography; but, he also creates a human story about a culture that is so foreign to the American way of life.

With much media hype, but modest box office gains, Selma has been nominated for best song and best motion picture. Much like last year’s Lee Daniels’ The Butler, Selma presents producer Oprah Winfrey’s perspective of civil rights history. Both films are entertaining with humane themes. Yet, when one walks out of Selma, one feels as if they sat in a historical lecture from a biased professor. The rhetoric veers toward propaganda with incomplete historical detail.

Most notably, the casting of British actors Tom Wilkinson and Tim Roth as President Johnson and Governor Wallace, respectively. The two British compatriots come across as stereotypical two-faced cackling villains, which detracts from David Oyelowo’s sincere performance as Martin Luther King Jr.

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CLERGY CORNER: Why your words MATTER

Posted on 29 January 2015 by L.Moore

The words you speak on a daily basis are powerful. They carry more weight than you may realize. Not only do they shape your thinking and, therefore, determine your actions, they also direct your relationships, your accomplishments, and, ultimately, define your reality. Still, it’s easy to underestimate the significance of words because they are so commonplace. You are immersed in them on a daily basis like a fish in water.

Stepping back and choosing to see the power and impact of your linguistic habits takes intentionality. But, when you are able to do just that, you’ll begin to realize that every word you say has the ability to change your life for better or for worse. The first step in using what comes out of your mouth to create the life you’ve imagined is to recognize three essential truths about the nature of words:

1. Words are a gift from God. The ability to use words at all is a gift from God. He was the first one to harness the creative force of words – and he has entrusted you with the same ability to use words to create the world around you. Given the substantial nature of this gift, you can’t just throw your words around any old way you please; they contain too much power and carry with them too much responsibility.

2. Words can build up or tear down. As a kid, you probably chanted the phrase, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” Even though it sounds good in theory, the phrase is just plain wrong. Words can hurt. I bet you don’t have any problem remembering the last harsh words that were spoken to you, or the last encouraging words you received. Other people’s words have incredible impact on your heart, as do your words on theirs. Keep this in mind as you speak to your spouse, your children, your friends and your coworkers.

3. The quality of your life is determined by the quality of your words. Words aren’t neutral. Every word that goes out has a consequence attached to it. How you speak to the people in your life will determine the quality of those relationships. How well you communicate with God through prayer will determine the quality of your connection with him. Your internal dialogue with yourself will determine the quality of your actions and interactions each day. When you consider all of these things together, it naturally follows that the quality of your very life is created by the words you speak. Using your words intentionally is crucial to living the life you’ve imagined.

As you become more conscious of the way you use language, you can begin to take advantage of its power to shape the life you want. In the process, you will be able to stop inadvertently sabotaging others and yourself with words that do nothing to help you.

To explore the power and significance of your words in more depth, be sure to check out my new book, Tongue Pierced: How the Words You Speak Transform the Life You Live (David C. Cook, 2015). Pick up your copy at Amazon. com, a book retailer near you or by visiting The Journey Church in Boca Raton. We would love to see you at our 9:30 or 11 a.m. service this Sunday! The Journey Church meets at Boca Raton High School.

Nelson Searcy is the author of 13 books and serves as the lead pastor of The Journey Church in Boca Raton. www.bocajourney.com.

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Stone leads Lions

Posted on 22 January 2015 by L.Moore

sports012215By Gary Curreri

What a difference a few years makes.

After being cut from the middle school team as an eighth-grader at Zion Lutheran, senior Keith Stone is making up for lost time.

The 6’8”, 230 lb. senior who averaged 28 points and six rebounds last season has the Lions primed for another postseason run. Zion Lutheran entered the week at 15-5 with narrow defeats to Cardinal Gibbons, Dillard, First Academy (Orlando), and Spring Valley and Dreher (both Columbia, SC).

When I got cut from middle school, I really didn’t feel like doing it then, and coach Francis (Bornelous) came and got me,” Stone, 17, of Deerfield Beach, said. “I worked real hard, spent the summer with him. He helped me out. He trained me every day for free, so I owe him the world. Look at me today. I am just doing my thing, getting better at basketball and learning the game.”

Stone, who played goalkeeper in a recreational soccer league and baseball before giving basketball a try when he enrolled at Zion Lutheran, has come full circle. He recently signed a national letter of intent to play basketball at the University of Florida next fall. His future college coach, Billy Donovan, was in attendance watching Stone play at the Kreul Classic holiday tournament in Coral Springs.

My old coach who cut me was proud of me and didn’t know I would turn out this way,” said Stone. “It helped me because it is the way my work ethic is set up. I like to work and I ain’t scared to work.”

It was hard in the beginning for Stone, who chose University of Florida over South Carolina, Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia Tech and Alabama. Stone is rated a four-star prospect and the nation’s 100th best (No. 9 in Florida) prospect for 2015 by ESPN and a three-star (No. 127 overall) by Rivals.

At first, I didn’t want to play basketball anymore,” Stone said. “I didn’t want to do nothing. I stayed home, played my video games and just sulked. Then, I thought to myself that this man (Bornelous) wanted me to become better in basketball and I might as well take that chance because I didn’t get that chance in middle school. I went with him.”

Stone believes he has improved in his ball handling and stretching the defense in the last couple of years. He can step out and knock down 3s. He also believes his supporting cast is better.

Our team is much better this year,” Stone said. “We have been, as a whole, since our 9th grade year. We all know each other. We all love each other and, since we are together almost every day, the communication is great on the court.”

Zion Lutheran boys’ basketball coach John Guion said the Kreul Classic helped his team.

We had three great tests,” Guion said. “We played different kinds of teams and I just think it does a great job preparing us for what we are going to see in the playoffs and down the road.

The whole key right now for us is to continue to get better,” Guion added. “We continue to see different things so we are continually learning from those mistakes that we make and the success that we have. We had a considerable amount of success this weekend.”

Guion said the team has also shown that it has more than Stone.

Coming in, we know we have Brandon Bornelous ,who is a great shooter, and we know we have Keith, who is a dynamic weapon,” Guion said. “I wasn’t sure what the others around him were going to do. The best thing that I have seen is that we have a lot of people stepping up like Kevin Dailey, Rashad Witty and Edwin Louis. This is just a better collective team than we had last year. They are really good with each other.”

Stone is looking forward to the future.

Winning state this year would be the icing on the cake,” Stone said. “I’d love to finish out my senior season with a state ring and then I head off to Florida.”

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FLICKS: Song One & American Sniper

Posted on 22 January 2015 by L.Moore

By Dave Montalbano

http://cinemadave.livejournal.com

Much like his previous success with the Oscar winner Million Dollar Baby and the box office champion Gran Torino, Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper has managed to break a January box office record with an amazing $104 million gross.

It has garnered six Oscar nominations, including best picture and best actor (Bradley Cooper’s performance as Navy Seal shooter Chris Kyle).

The film opens in a most dramatic fashion. While stationed on a rooftop in Iraq, Kyle targets a woman and a boy. In his telescopic lens, Kyle spots a hand grenade. Should he take the shot or not?

The film flashes back to Kyle’s youth in Texas. A successful rodeo rider, Kyle watches CNN news and sees an American Embassy being bombed. He realizes his life’s calling – to protect and defend the people of the United States of America.

American Sniper focuses on Kyle’s four tours of duty. While on leave, Kyle and his wife, Taya (Sienna Miller) raises two kids and attempts to adjust to civilian life. Yet, Kyle is haunted by the soldiers he feels he is abandoning on the battlefield.

From the opening scene to the quiet closing credits, everything about this film feels appropriate. As “the Legend,” Bradley Cooper gives a genuine performance of stoic emotion. He is a true soldier who cannot acknowledge his vulnerability — even to the woman he loves. American Sniper deserves its Oscar and Box Office success.

For quieter fair, Song One opens tomorrow, starring Anne Hathaway and Mary Steenburgen. This is a quiet drama about a guitar singer who becomes brain damaged after being hit by a taxicab. His estranged sister Franny (Hathaway) tries to reconnect with her comatose brother through his interests.

Song One is a simple, sweet movie about musical therapy. Romance blooms, but that is not the focal part of this fascinating movie. This film is about the importance of reconnecting a loved one through art and entertainment.

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CLERGY CORNER: What Would Dr. King Say?

Posted on 22 January 2015 by L.Moore

The deaths of Eric Garner and Michael Brown spotlighted what has unfortunately become the perspective of many in this country: that while we have made progress in the experience of racial equality and justice, we still regrettably have a long way to go.

We all saw the public reaction to the grand jury decision in the Michael Brown case. Many of us were even more flabbergasted at the decision in the Eric Garner case. From rioting in St. Louis to protests in cities like New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, demonstrators took to the streets to voice their disapproval.

As we reflect upon the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. we may inevitably wonder what he would have thought and said had he been alive to witness the current challenges we face.

While there may be some who would claim to know exactly what he would think and say, the truth is that none of us can say for sure. What we do know, however, is how he thought and what he said during the height of the struggle in his day. His words then may give us an idea how he would respond now:

I think we have to look deeper … if we are to find the real cause of man’s problems and the real cause of the world’s ills today. If we are to find it, I think we have to look in the hearts and souls of men … The real problem is that through our scientific genius we’ve made of the world a neighborhood; but, through our moral and spiritual genius, we’ve failed to make of it a brotherhood.” “Rediscovering Lost Values” (Feb. 28, 1954)

Violence creates many more social problems than it solves. And I’ve said, in so many instances, that as the Negro, in particular, and colored peoples all over the world struggle for freedom, if they succumb to the temptation of using violence in their struggle, unborn generations will be the recipients of a long and desolate night of bitterness, and our chief legacy to the future will be an endless reign of meaningless chaos. Violence isn’t the way”. – “Loving Your Enemies” (Nov. 17, 1957)

We must come to see that the roots of racism are very deep in our country, and there must be something positive and massive in order to get rid of all the effects of racism and the tragedies of racial injustice”. –“Remaining Awake Through a Great Revolution” (March 31, 1968)

About two years ago now, I stood with many of you who stood there in person and all of you who were there in spirit before the Lincoln Monument in Washington. As I came to the end of my speech there, I tried to tell the nation about a dream I had. I must confess to you this morning that since that sweltering August afternoon in 1963, my dream has often turned into a nightmare. …But, I tell you this morning once more that I haven’t lost the faith. I still have a dream that one day all of God’s children will have food and clothing and material well-being for their bodies, culture and education for their minds and freedom for their spirits … I still have a dream this morning that truth will reign supreme and all of God’s children will respect the dignity and worth of human personality. And when this day comes, the morning stars will sing together and the sons of God will shout for joy.” “The American Dream” (July 4, 1965)

Bishop Patrick L. Kelly is the pastor of Cathedral Church of God, 365 S. Dixie Hwy., Deerfield Beach, FL 33441. 954-427-0302.

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Tigers hope for undefeated season, state title

Posted on 15 January 2015 by L.Moore

sports011515By Gary Curreri

Blanche Ely High School senior Therell Gosier is headed to the University of Miami next year to play football. He still has a few items to cross off his bucket list before he graduates.

Gosier, 19, of Pompano Beach, is hoping to keep the Tigers boys’ basketball team on track for an undefeated season. Blanche Ely entered this week’s action at 15-0.

I knew we would be this good, but I didn’t think we’d be this good early,” said the 6-7, 210-lb. center. “We still have a couple of kinks we still have to work out.

We are trying to do something special,” added Gosier, who averages 14.6 points and 8.5 rebounds a game. “We have a chance to be the first Blanche Ely team to go undefeated and win state this year so mainly that’s our goal to go to state and try to be undefeated. That’s our little edge going into every game.”

Gosier, a two-sport athlete at the school, welcomes the pressure of being undefeated.

It helps us a lot having a target on our back because we know we have to bring it every night,” Gosier said. “Everyone wants to be that first team to knock us off and give us that first ‘L’. So we bring it every game to make sure that no team gives us that first loss.”

Blanche Ely coach Melvin Randall is in his 21st year, including the past 14 at Ely. Randall won state titles in 1997 with Deerfield (Class 5A) and his win in 1999 (Class 6A) came at the expense of his current school Ely, 77-69. After moving over to Ely, Randall won state titles in 2007 (Class 6A), 2012 (Class 7A) and 2013 (Class 7A).

Randall, who has compiled a 489-141 record at the school during that 14-year span, believes this year’s team could be one of the best ever.

This is a special team,” Randall said. “Definitely at the guard play, I haven’t had a team with strong guard play in a while. I have had some good guards, but, with this team, you are talking about four or five that I can put out there. I have the flexibility to do that with this team.”

Randall said the team has played well since the summer when they showed promise during AAU play.

They played on the AAU teams and they did great on the AAU circuit,” Randall said. “Now we have come together and we are keeping it family based.”

Even though the team graduated Lance Tejada (East Carolina) and Josh Floyd (Florida State College at Jacksonville) and Richard Lee went back to Northeast High School, the Tigers have still found a way to win. The team benefited from senior guard senior LaQuincy Rideau, a transfer from Palm Beach Lakes, who lives with his aunt in Pompano Beach.

Senior Javon Heastie, along with juniors Mark Houston and Trevor Goodrum, have all stepped up their games, according to Randall.

The Tigers finished 21-5 last season, i n c l u d i n g four losses to Boyd Anderson and once to Cardinal Gibbons in the Big 8. The team has been undefeated during the season before as it ran off 27 consecutive wins until it lost to Dwyer 70-57 in the regional semifinal in the 2009-2010 season.

We are all coming together,” Randall said. “From the outside looking in, the fans and the spectators, we know we are not there yet. We still have a ways to go. We are better off now than we were a couple of weeks ago. We are still having problems with the rotation. I think they have been rotating well. These people have to understand to see those hard traps and to shift and rotate players. I think, once we get that down pat, it is going to prove that it will be pretty hard for a team to score easily.”

Gosier hopes the team finishes the year the way they started.

I t would be great,” Gosier said. “We would go down in history as probably the best basketball team ever to play at Blanche Ely. Going undefeated and winning states would be a great feeling.”

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FLICKS: Selma and To Kill a Mockingbird

Posted on 15 January 2015 by L.Moore

flicks011515By Dave Montalbano

http://cinemadave.livejournal.com

Despite a modest $11 million opening weekend box office, Selma is expected to become a box office juggernaut this weekend and by the time the Oscar statues are distributed Feb. 22.

Selma deals with Martin Luther King Jr.’s civil rights march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama in 1965.

Five years previously, Alabama citizen Harper Lee published To Kill a Mockingbird, her only published book. Told from the perspective of an elementary school aged little girl named Scout, this book presents the fine line between imagined and real terror.

The first part of the book deals with Scout, her big brother – Jem, their best friend Dil (inspired by Harper Lee’s childhood buddy — Truman Capote) and their curiosity about the mysterious “Boo” Radley, a reclusive neighbor who is never seen in daylight.

The second part of the book deals with Scout’s father – Atticus Finch, a lawyer who must defend Tom Robinson, a black man who is accused of raping a white woman.

Both stories intersect and provide a satisfying conclusion that best explains why it is a sin “To Kill a Mockingbird.”

A best-seller for 41 weeks, this book earned Harper Lee the Pulitzer award in 1961. Hollywood came a calling and a film was produced in 1962, garnering an Oscar for Gregory Peck’s portrayal of Atticus Finch. (It lost the Best Picture Award to Lawrence of Arabia.) Peck and Lee became lifelong friends. One must wonder how Harper Lee’s words influenced the actions of Martin Luther King and the civil rights march a few years after the book’s publication.

Starting this weekend, continuing through Feb. 28, the Broward County Libraries Division will be celebrating To Kill a Mockingbird as part of “The Big Read.” A program created by the National Endowment for the Arts, in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Libraries, “The Big Read” is designed to unite communities through great literature to discover the transformative joys of reading. All 40 Broward County libraries will be creating special programming for “The Big Read.” For a listing of programs, visit www.broward. org/Library/read.

On Monday, Jan. 26 at 12:30 p.m., Deerfield Beach Percy White Library will be hosting a special program. Copies of To Kill a Mockingbird will be distributed during the discussion, as well as other special surprises.

Enjoy a good read, enjoy an Oscar-nominated film this Martin Luther King Jr. weekend. Take the time to reflect how far we have come in a

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CLERGY CORNER: Wake up and make The Dream come true

Posted on 15 January 2015 by L.Moore

The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream, and, to us, he stood 9 ft. tall.

Sadly, many in this world have still not woken up to his dream. They continue to keep their eyes closed to the prejudice and hate against our African American brothers and sisters.

Dreams are amazing gifts. We even find dreams in the Bible itself. And the scriptures teach us, as Theodore Hertzl summed up saying, “If you will it hard enough, it is no dream.” In other words, it is up to us not just to dream the dream, but to walk the walk. There is still much work to be done in regard to equality. The Rev. Dr. King Jr.’s dream has come a long, long way; but, it is up to each of us to help bring that beautiful dream to full fruition.

As Jews, we know what it is like to be treated with hate and bigotry. As Jews, we know what it is like to struggle for fulfillment of a dream. As Jews, we know that there is still much work for us to do in this beautiful but broken world in which we live. As Jews, we know that we have to wake the world from its slumber.

Jews walked side by side with the great leaders of the Civil Rights movement, side by side with our African American brothers and sisters, and, just as we continue to struggle on so many fronts for the fulfillment of our dreams, it is also our Biblical imperative to work toward fulfillment of Dr. King’s dream as well.

Let us hope that the day does indeed come when all people, Black, White, Jew and Gentile, can walk up that mountain together and live in blessed peace with the knowledge that we are all, indeed, brothers and sisters as we all come from the same Father, G-d, The Almighty.

As we approach the special day set aside to honor the late, great Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Temple Beth Israel of Deerfield Beach will present one of the greatest plays ever made about someone stuck in a long sleep who, finally, wakes up to a new world.

That’s right, the Temple will be showing a production of Washington Irving’s “Rip Van Winkle” … and not just any production, but one where the characters stand 9 ft. tall. The program will be enjoyed by people of all ages and it is the Temple’s hope that many will opt to purchase admission ($10 per person) so that tickets can be given to members of groups like the Boys & Girls Club of Deerfield Beach so they can enjoy this special play on Jan. 18 at 1 p.m., which is the day before this year’s official observance of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

We look forward to seeing you there.

Rabbi Ezring is the spiritual leader of Temple Beth Israel of Deerfield Beach (201 S. Military Tr., Deerfield Beach). His motivational sermons can be heard at the Temple’s weekly shabbat services (9:30 a.m. Saturdays). Rabbi Ezring is a member of the N.A.J.C. and of the A.P.C. He has served as a hospice chaplain and continues to work in pastoral care at several health facilities in the Broward County Area. For reservations, call 954-428-0578.

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Marshall defeats NIU in inaugural Boca Bowl, 52-23

Posted on 08 January 2015 by L.Moore

sports010815Photos by Jim Wilson

Rakeem Cato performed as advertised Tuesday night, Dec. 23, leading Marshall to a resounding 52-23 shellacking of Northern Illinois in the inaugural Boca Raton Bowl.

Cato completed 25 of 37 passes for 281 yards and three touchdowns, and the Thundering Herd handed NIU its third consecutive bowl defeat.

That’s what great quarterbacks do, they put it on the dime,” NIU coach Rod Carey said. “He did and we didn’t get it out. We had a chance to battle for those balls and get ‘em out and make them line up again.”

Marshall (13-1) flirted with a perfect regular-season record. Marshall’s lone defeat — 67-66 to Western Kentucky in double overtime came on Nov. 28.

One game isn’t going to take away what a great season we had,” Carey said. “We just won the fourth MAC championship in school history … the third in four years. And they can’t take that away from this senior class.” Marshall receiver Tommy Shuler caught 18 of Cato’s passes for 185 yards and a touchdown.

Cato did a good job of making plays when he needed to,” NIU cornerback Dechane Durante said. “They were just staying on the field and wearing our defense down. Quick throws … gashing us up the gut. He did a good job.”

The Huskies’ big failure was not taking advantage of red-zone opportunities, settling for three field goals from freshman Christian Hagan. NIU quarterback Drew Hare was off his game, completing 15 of 27 passes for 225 yards and one touchdown. He was sacked three times. “We have to do a better job of protecting Drew, and that’s on us,” tackle Ryan Brown said. NIU took a 7-0 lead with 7 minutes, 33 seconds left in the first quarter on a 19-yard pass from Hare to Juwan Brescacin. Marshall’s Deandre Reaves returned the ensuing kickoff 93 yards for the tying touchdown.

Cato scored a go-ahead touchdown from 5 yards out to make it 14-7 after the first quarter. NIU missed a scoring opportunity when Hagan missed a 32-yard field-goal attempt wide right. Marshall extended its lead to 17-7 when Justin Haig booted a 28-yarder. At the end of a 64-yard drive, NIU had to settle for a 19-yard Hagan field goal. A 2-yard TD run by Marshall’s Devon Johnson made it 24-10. Hagan’s second field goal of the night, this one from 30 yards, pulled NIU within 24-13 at the half.

NIU recovered an onside kick to start the second half but could not convert a first down on a fourth-down run by Cameron Stingily. “I thought we ran the ball well at times, but not when we needed to,” Carey said. “There were a lot of tears. There’s a lot of heartache in there. And that’s because these guys care. And they poured their whole selves into this thing. But when the dust settles, the first thing they are going to think of is MAC championships and things like that they have been a part of.”

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