Quarterback Alejandro Bennifield passed for three touchdowns and ran for two more as the Massachusetts Pirates defeated the Bismarck Bucks 36 to 18 at the Bismarck Event Center to up their record to two wins and one loss on the season. The victory ruined the Bucks home opener for 2021 as they the fell to one and one.

Things started well for the Bucks as Cody Barber made two field goals and quarterback Glen Cuiellette hit Raheem Harvey with a 45-yard bomb giving Bismarck a 12-0 first quarter lead. The rest of the game belonged to the Pirates.

Bennifield fired a seven-yard pass to Thomas Owens for six to put the Pirates on the board on the first play of the second quarter. The Bucks Mike Carrigan took the ensuing kickoff 44 yards but a touchdown saving tackle by kicker Gabriel Rui set the stage for the Pirates defense. The defense came to life and on third and goal defensive back Santos Ramirez caused Cuiellette to fumble out of the end zone and the Pirates took over. They tied the game with 6:02 to play in the half as Darren Carrington II caught his first touchdown pass of the season. Massachusetts capped off 20 straight points as Bennifield scored on a seven-yard run and Rui added his first deuce of the year on the kick off and the Pirates led 20 to 12 at halftime.

Bismarck drew close in the third quarter as with 8:57 on the clock Cuiellette found Harvey for the second time on the evening for a score, this one from 12 yards out. The two-point conversion was no good and the Pirates led by two, 20 to 18. Bismarck would not score the rest of the game. On the next play from scrimmage the Pirates increased their lead to 26-18. From the Bucks 21-yard line, Bennifield found wide receiver Terrence Williams at the 11. Williams who slipped while making the catch, got back to his feet and raced the rest of the way into the end zone.

Rui started the fourth quarter with a 22-yard field goal and then with 8:20 remaining on third and eight from their own six, Bennifield went deep to Owens on a 40-yard completion to the Bucks four-yard line. Three plays later Bennifield closed the scoring with his second rushing touchdown of the game and with the point after the Pirates earned a 36 to 18 triumph.

Bennifield was 16 of 30 passing for 186 yards and three scores and he was also the games top rusher with 31 yards on eight carries with two scores. Owens was the Pirates top receiver with eight catches for 107 yards and a touchdown. For the Bucks, Cuiellette was 7 of 15 for 74 yards and two TD’s while Harvey led Bismarck with four receptions for 90 yards and two scores. The Massachusetts defense held the Bucks to 249 total yards of offense which included a minus 8 rushing yards for the game.
The Pirates will now have a bye week and then return to DCU Center for their home opener vs. the Spokane Shock on Saturday night May 22 at 7:30.

The Massachusetts Pirates are members of the Indoor Football league (IFL). The Pirates play all home games at Phoenix Field at the DCU Center located at 50 Foster St. Worcester, MA. 01608. For More information on the Massachusetts Pirates please call (508) 452-MASS (6277), email contact@masspiratesfootball.com or visit http://www.masspiratesfootball.com. Single game tickets will be available soon at ticketmaster.com or the DCU Center Box Office. For season, half-season, luxury, or group ticket packages please call 508-452-MASS (6227). Follow the Pirates on Facebook via Facebook.com/MAPirates, Instagram @mass.pirates, and Twitter @mass_pirates. #GetHooked #AllAboard

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