Scarlet defeat White 31-3

Senior Dom Natale entered today's spring game with the goal of leaving a lasting impression in the Rutgers football team's final spring practice to help his odds when the real competition starts up.

And Natale did exactly that, leading the first team offense to its most potent performance of the entire spring.

In his first series of the day, Natale led the offense downfield for a San San Te field goal to give his Scarlet Team the lead.

"I think we came out and we established the line of scrimmage and that the O-line did a great job opening up those holes for Joe [Martinek]," Natale said. "They gave me a ton of time so I think as a unit we came out there and just executed well."

And then sophomore running back Joe Martinek helped Natale opened the flood gates in the first half, running for 71 yards and three touchdowns before the halftime whistle blew.

Natale and Martinek saw minimal time in the second half as the scarlet team (first team offense and second team defense) beat the white team (first team defense and second team offense) 31-3. For the first time this spring, the first team offense truly found success against the first team defense as Natale completed 11-of-19 passes for a total of 187 yards and a touchdown.

"From what I saw, Dom played well today," said Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano who spent some of the day meeting with recruits. "He threw it with authority."

Playing with Natale and Martinek on the first team offense was the usual offensive line, fullback Jack Corcoran, tight end Fabian Ruiz (replacing an injured Shamar Graves) and Tim Wright and Tim Brown at receiver.

Brown led all receivers in the game with 116 yards on five catches to go along with a 46-yard completion with Natale on the other end.

Freshman Mohamed Sanu also saw significant action with the first team at wide receiver and made an immediate impact in just his fifth day as a wide receiver, grabbing the lone passing touchdown of the day from Natale and finishing the day with four catches and 43 yards. "He's a great kid. He's athletic and he can do it," Tim Brown said of his new impact receiver. "He can play all over the place. He's great because he's a big body, almost a Kenny Britt so we've just got to keep working with him all off season and he could be a great fit."

With the second team, D.C. Jefferson completed two of his six passes for 17 yards and Steve Shimko didn't fare much better, going `three-for-five for 32 yards and getting sacked five times. On the defensive side of the ball, Jonathan Freeny and Alex Silvestro started at defensive ends with Blair Bines and Charlie Noonan playing inside. Junior Jim Dumont played middle linebacker with Damaso Munoz and Manny Abreu playing on either side of him. The first team secondary consisted of Billy Anderson and Brandon Bing at the cornerback spots at Zaire Kitchen and Pat Kivlehan manned down the safety spot.

"Today went OK," said cornerback Brandon Bing. "We've got a lot of things we need to work on, but overall it went OK … It was great to get out in front of all the fans again. I missed that." Abreu led all defenders with 10 tackles and a fumble recovery with defensive backs Brandon Bing and Zaire Kitchen behind him with six tackles each.

With the second team, defensive tackle Eric LeGrand lit it up, recording three sacks on four tackles making the offense lose a total of 29 yards.

"I can take a lot from today," LeGrand said. "It was great to have a game like that and put on a show for the fans who came out and enjoyed themselves for the spring game. I just gave 100 percent and played with a lot of enthusiasm."

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