JU’s quest for another Pioneer Football League title came to a tired end on Saturday, Nov. 19 at the hands of the University of San Diego. The Dolphins trip to sunny California was anything but a magical California vacation.
In a game that was going to decide the Co-PFL champion, the Dolphins saw themselves in an early hole. JU spotted San Diego a controversial 14 point lead. San Diego scored their second TD after what was ruled a fumble by JU QB Josh McGregor.
“It was the key play of the first half,” Head Coach Kerwin Bell said.
Bell contested the call and was handed a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.
“You could see he was down, but the officials didn’t like that I was challenging it. They said they couldn’t overrule it,” said Bell.
San Diego scored 17 first half points and never looked back. JU got it to 17-14 but couldn’t get out of the hole they dug themselves. The Dolphins eventually fell 23-14 to San Diego in the end.
The offense was not their usual explosive selves and couldn’t seem to get anything going on the day. They were held to just 33 yards rushing.
McGregor yet again etched his name into the record books as he completed 22 of 36 passes for 214 yards and 1 TD. He broke the PFL mark for completions and stepped up to 6th on the all-time Football Championship Series TD pass list with 116.
Although the day did not end how they may have wanted it, there is plenty of things to build off of for next season. Not only do they have a good foundation, but they have a great leader to look up to in Coach Bell, who summed up this game with true sportsmanship.
“Its a very disappointing day, but the better team won,” said Bell. “They got us in a one dimensional game and that was the difference.”
The Dolphins have now concluded yet another good season, but coach Bell was still not satisfied. He expects a title out of his teams. If they plan to do so next year, they have some holes to fill before doing so.