Andrew Notarfrancesco started his Catholic University football career as a promising defensive player. He's finishing it as one of the program's all-time best offensive players.
Notarfrancesco, a senior running back, ran for four touchdowns yesterday to lead the Cardinals to a 45-7 victory over Hampden-Sydney at DuFour Field. Catholic, which is ranked 17th in Division III, improved to 6-1 overall (3-0 in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference). The Tigers are 1-6, 0-5.
"I think we're where we want to be," Catholic Coach Tom Clark said of his team, which has won six consecutive games since a season-opening loss to John Carroll. "I think we're hitting our stride now."
Catholic dominated from the outset yesterday, scoring 21 points in each of the first two quarters and taking a 42-7 halftime lead.
Sophomore quarterback Derek McGee threw two touchdown passes. The first went to senior Mike Hunter (Gonzaga) on the first drive and the second to freshman Dan Evans (Paul VI Catholic) with 35 seconds left in the half.
In between those scores, Notarfrancesco (96 yards on 21 carries) scored four straight times, all on runs of eight yards or less. The last one gave him 53 career rushing touchdowns, breaking the school record held by Matt Taylor, Notarfrancesco's teammate his freshman year.
"The linemen deserve as much press and publicity as I get," Notarfrancesco said. "I'm only as good as they are. They open up the holes and I just run through them."
Notarfrancesco is "a power runner, low to the ground," said Clark, who improved to 6-0 for his career against Hampden-Sydney. "I just think he's very difficult to get under and get to the ground."
During his first season, Notarfrancesco started nine games at outside linebacker, recording 39 tackles and 4.5 sacks. But the next season, with Taylor's eligibility expired, Notarfrancesco was moved to running back.
BOWIE ST. 26, N.C. CENTRAL 25: A botched extra-point attempt by North Carolina Central in overtime gave the Bulldogs the win at home.
The Bulldogs (4-3, 3-2 Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association) took the lead on the first possession of overtime as T-Wuan Prather scored on a 14-yard touchdown run.
Junior Bulla answered for the Eagles (3-5, 2-3) with a five-yard touchdown run. Roger Burbage had his first extra-point attempt blocked, but Bowie State was offside. On the second attempt, the ball was snapped over the holder's head, and Bowie State recovered to seal the win.
MONTGOMERY-ROCKVILLE 45, POTOMAC ST. 0: Pat Cilento (Sherwood) threw for 243 yards and Al Beverly had touchdown catches of 55, 30 and 25 yards as Montgomery-Rockville (7-1) cruised in Keyser, W. Va.