image courtesy of ABC6
The 2021 edition of the annual Governor’s Cup between in-state rivals URI and Brown was all Rhody, as the Rams dominated to the tune of a comfortable 45-24 victory.
It was the Ivy Leaguers who jumped out to a quick 7-0 lead off the heels of an 11-play, 4 minute drive matriculated by Brown QB EJ Perry. The signal caller completed 6 of his first 7 passes including a 14-yard touchdown pass to Hayes Sutton.
Despite Perry attempting 28 first half passes, it wasn’t enough to outshine the first half of his counterpart. Rams QB Kasim Hill completed 4 passes of 20 or more yards before intermission, including a 35-yard score to RB Justice Anthrum to tie it up early at 7.
This was the first dosage of 17 first quarter points scored by the Rams. An interception by LB Andre Blackett the following Brown possession set up a Rhody field goal to extend the lead to 10-7.
Perhaps the biggest X-factor in the first half was URI tight end Caleb Warren, who hauled in 99 receiving yards before halftime. The most substantial of these helped give the Rams a 17-7 advantage, a 57-yard completion right down the seam that set up a Kasim Hill rushing touchdown from one yard out.
It was clear the Brown offense wanted to air it out early, but when they ran the ball it was effective. On a 16-play, nearly six minute drive that featured several handoffs to RB Allen Smith, who punched it in for a critical score to cut the lead to 17-14 before halftime.
The second half was dominated by the Rams right off the bat. An early third quarter strip sack caused by junior DB Henry Yianakopolis set up a 7-yard Caleb Warren touchdown reception to extend to lead to double digits. Warren led all receivers with 105 yards, setting a new career high.
The third quarter proved to be nightmarish for the home team Bears, who were outscored 21-0 in the period. URI was able to turn a couple of Brown three and outs and a red zone fumble by Allen Smith into 14 points. The offensive play of the game came three plays after the fumble, when Rams receiver Matt Pires took a Kasim Hill screen pass 80 yards for the touchdown to make it a 38-14 game. Hill finished the game completing 13 of 19 pass attempts, for 320 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Turnovers killed any momentum Brown was able to achieve on long, clock-milking drives, with two of their three turnovers being committed in the red zone. The final cherry on top of a blowout win was a 106-yard interception return for a touchdown by URI DB Jordan Jones, who outraced everyone en route to the end zone to stamp the three touchdown triumph for Rhody.
For Brown, they fall to 0-1 in their season opener and will travel to Cambridge next week to play Harvard. Comparatively, URI begins the season 3-0 for the first time since 2005 and will play Stony Brook at home next Saturday.