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Monmouth defeats Bucknell in final non-conference matchup

Monmouth defeated Bucknell 36-19 as the Hawks picked up their second consecutive victory.

After a week off, Monmouth went back to work hosting Bucknell at Kessler Stadium on Saturday. At 3-2, the Hawks were looking to continue their home dominance and continue the climb towards an FCS playoff berth.

Led by Juwon Farri’s 194 total yards, Monmouth defeated Bucknell, 36-19, on a beautiful fall afternoon on the Jersey Shore. The Hawks capped off the win scoring 20 second-half points to put the Bisons away late. The victory gives Monmouth two consecutive victories heading into their Big South opener against Campbell on Saturday. Let’s look at the three major takeaways from Saturday’s win.

Defense Continues To Take Shape

A question mark going into the season for Monmouth was the defensive backfield. There was a ton of change as many saw the secondary as a weakness. Against Bucknell, the much-maligned unit stepped up as they held Bucknell to just 189 yards passing. They were also part of a defense that held Bucknell to 3-for-14 on third down conversions.

“Today we had to focus on our eyes and technique,” said junior defensive back Tymere Berry. “Things that we let slip in the last few games. We wanted to make it a point and work on our eyes and our discipline.”

With conference play beginning next week, these first six games were needed to solidify the secondary. This game showed that the unit might be further along than many believe and showed they that could be a significant factor in the Big South. Led by Berry, Monmouth’s defense could be on its way to being dominant in the second half of the 2018 season.

Farri Continues To Impress

In three games this season, Juwon Farri has shown himself to be a revelation for the Hawks. In a game where Pete Guerrireoro did not play, Farri ran for 183 yards and a touchdown in the Hawks’ win on Saturday. The freshman running back put the game out of reach with a 79-yard run with four minutes left to put Monmouth up 29-19. Monmouth may have a star in Juwon Farri.

Even without Guerriero, Monmouth did not miss a beat and that will be important going forward. Kenji Bahar had a good game against Bucknell, but his success was and will be predicated on the running attack. Farri’s performance showed that Monmouth has two running backs worthy of being number ones on any team in the country.

White Jr. Continues To Break Records

After breaking Monmouth’s record for most career receptions, Reggie White Jr. set a new mark for the most receiving yards in school history after catching a 23-yard touchdown in the third quarter. White Jr. passed Miles Austin on the list and has 2,900 receiving yards in his MU career. The score was also his 23rd with Monmouth, which places him second in school history.

I said it two weeks ago, and I will repeat it. White Jr. is proving to be one of the best players in Monmouth football history and FCS as well. The 6’3” receiver has the size and hands to be successful at the next level ala Jerry Rice or Cris Carter. But not just that, White Jr. is a young man who will graduate with a degree and has been an example of how to act as a student-athlete. Congratulations go to Reggie White Jr.

What’s Next For The Hawks

Monmouth starts their five-game Big South conference schedule against Campbell on Saturday at Kessler Stadium. Game time for the 2018 Homecoming game is set for 1 p.m.

Kahlil Thomas

Kahlil is the College Sports Editor for DoubleGSports.com as well as a columnist, hosting the Bump 'N Run column once per week. He also co-hosts a weekly basketball podcast, The Box Out, every Thursday evening with fellow DoubleGSports.com writer Jason Cordner.
Kahlil Thomas
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