FILE PHOTO: LEONEL DE VELEZ/THE HOYA Senior linebacker Robert McCabe (4) set a Georgetown program record for tackles against Colgate Saturday. He now has 364.
FILE PHOTO: LEONEL DE VELEZ/THE HOYA
Senior linebacker Robert McCabe (4) set a Georgetown program record for tackles against Colgate Saturday. He now has 364.

The Georgetown football team (3-5, 0-3 Patriot League) was unable to contain the explosive offense of Colgate (4-3, 2-0 Patriot League) Saturday, dropping the conference road matchup, 57-36.

Despite the disappointment, the Hoyas were carried by several outstanding individual performances. Sophomore wideout Kevin Macari — who recorded 181 receiving yards and a career-high four touchdowns — and fourth-string freshman quarterback Kyle Nolan — who threw all three of Macari’s receiving touchdowns — provided the bulk of the highlights for the Blue and Gray in an otherwise bleak defeat.

Nolan, who was named Patriot League rookie of the week for his performance, was making the first start of his collegiate career after third-string sophomore Stephen Skon injured his foot. He finished the afternoon 16-for-37 passing with 260 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions.

“We had a couple injuries, and Kyle [Nolan] has been working with the offense in practice and doing some good things, so we thought ‘Why not?’” Head Coach Kevin Kelly said. “We wanted to see him in the heat of battle, and he exceeded expectations. He did a terrific job. His pocket presence was terrific, and he did a great job in the huddle.”

Senior linebacker Robert McCabe, always a staple on the defensive side of the ball, set the program record for tackles Saturday, notching 17 to take his career total to 364 and surpassing 2011 graduate Nick Parrish’s mark of 349. McCabe is also leading the nation in tackles this season, with a total of 116.

While those figures prompted individual cheers from the Blue and Gray, the final score on the field was another matter.

Colgate got off to a quick start Saturday, marching 71 yards on five plays in the first drive of the afternoon that culminated in a 19-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Gavin McCarney. After missing the extra-point attempt, the Raiders led, 6-0.

Georgetown answered on the next drive, starting with a 34-yard return by senior cornerback Jeremy Moore. After gaining a first down to the Colgate 40-yard line, Nolan completed a pass to fellow freshman Jake DeCicco for a first down. From there, the freshman found Macari with a 25-yard score, and junior Matt MacZura converted the extra point to put his team up, 7-6.

This first lead of the day for Georgetown would also be its last, however, as Colgate roared back to score four more touchdowns and a field goal in the first half. The Hoyas only managed one more touchdown in the first — a 9-yard pass from Macari to Nolan — sending the teams into the break with Colgate sitting on a 37-14 lead.

The Blue and Gray came out firing in the second half, though, with Nolan finding Macari again for a 62-yard touchdown reception that cut the Raiders’ lead to 37-21.

Senior linebacker Jeremy Grasso kept the Hoyas’ momentum going with an interception early in Colgate’s next drive. Georgetown was then able to pound it in on the ground for another score by Macari, and the ensuing 2-point conversion dive by Nolan pulled them to within one score at 37-29.

But with their backs against the wall, the Raiders executed a long 14-play drive that ended in a touchdown.  While Colgate’s special teams struggled once again and missed their point after touchdown, they didn’t miss a mark on their next touchdown, scoring on the first play of the fourth quarter to take an insurmountable 50-29 advantage.

The Hoyas’ final score of the game occurred on the ensuing drive on a 3-yard touchdown rush by freshman running back Jo’el Kimpela, but Colgate answered back with yet another touchdown, going on to win, 57-36.

Those 57 points scored — a season high allowed by Georgetown — and 707 yards gained by Colgate are big concerns for Kelly’s squad, no matter how prolific the Raiders may be on offense.

“It was kind of the perfect storm today. We didn’t execute very well on defense, and they are a great offensive football team. Their [offense] put us on our heels, and we just played poorly,” Kelly said. “When you give up that many points, there aren’t a lot of players that played well. The only one who I think did really well was McCabe.”

To turn around the sagging season, Georgetown will have to make big adjustments before Saturday, when the team takes on Lafayette at 6:05 p.m. in Easton, Pa.

“We’re going to go back to our roots, so to speak, and take a good look at what we’re doing. We’re going back to the basics of being a fundamental football team,” Kelly said. “That’s what defensive football is all about: execution. When you make a mistake at this level of football, a good offensive team will take advantage of that.”

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