Late Comeback Leaves Football Short Of Williams
October 17, 2009
Williams held off a late surge by Middlebury as the Ephs moved to 3-1 on the season with a 37-27 win over the Panthers (1-3) on Youngman Field at Alumni Stadium. Williams had a slight edge in yardage on the day, holding a 454-403 advantage, but controlled the ball by a margin of 38:38-21:19. Middlebury quarterback Donald McKillop became the school's all-time leader in passing yardage (4,856), surpassing Mike Keenan, who threw for 4,544 from '02-'04. Linebacker Eric Kamback tied the school's single-game record of 20 tackles, held by Josh Bonifas in '96.
Williams came out strong, scoring on six of its first seven possessions. Ryan Lupo opened the scoring with a five-yard touchdown run at the 8:44 mark of the first quarter. Lupo caught a 19-yard pass on the drive, while rushing for 22 yards. The lead grew to 10-0 later in the quarter on a 36-yard field goal from Scott Sobolewski. The kicker struck again at the 11:35 mark of the second quarter, this time from 29 yards out to make it a 13-0 contest. Following a Middlebury punt, the Ephs drove 49 yards on seven plays, as Lupo cashed in from one yard out to give Williams a 20-0 advantage.
The Panthers got on the board on the ensuing possession, driving 58 yards on five plays to make it a 20-7 game with 3:35 left in the half. A 39-yard connection from McKillop to Erik Rostad set up a 14-yard scamper from McKillop into the end zone. Williams answered with a 28-yarder from Sobolewski to close the half.
The second half looked to be much the same, as the Ephs scored on a 10-yard run from Matt Coyne on their first possession, taking a 30-7 lead. A 30-yard connection from Pat Moffitt to Nick Caro set up the scoring drive.
Middlebury then got its offense going, while the defense held the Ephs at bay. A lengthy 74-yard drive ended in a five-yard strike from McKillop to Matt Rayner with 4:44 left in the third quarter. McKillop found four different receivers on the drive, as Rostad picked up a 13-yard run.
Following a defensive stop, the offense moved the ball quickly on a nine-play, 75-yard drive that took just 2:33. McKillop hit Tim Monaghan for 10, James Millard for 11 and Rostad for 23 yards to open the drive. The scoring play came on an eight-yard fade to David Reed to make it a 30-20 contest early in the fourth quarter.
Three series later, Middlebury needed just one play to make it a three-point game, as McKillop hit Millard for a 61-yard touchdown. Millard spun away from a tackler and then broke away to the end zone, making it a 30-27 game with 8:46 left to play.
Williams drove to the Panther six on its next possession, but the Middlebury defense held on a fourth and three play, giving Middlebury the ball back at the 4:31 mark. Three plays later, the Panthers were forced to punt from deep in their own zone, giving Williams the ball on the Middlebury 42-yard line. Six plays later, the Ephs put the game out of reach as Lupo scored from three-yards out to make it a 37-27 final.
McKillop completed 28 of 47 passes for 315 yards with three touchdowns and one interception, while rushing for 41 yards and a touchdown. Millard caught eight passes for 118 yards with a touchdown, while Rostad pulled down seven passes for 105 yards. Kamback's monster day led the defense, while Andrew Durfee had 15 tackles, two for lost yardage. Connor Green added a dozen stops, while Michael Bilodeau had 11.
Moffitt went 14 of 24 for 163 yards for the Ephs, while Lupo gained 136 yards on 37 carries with three touchdowns. Chris Cameron led the Williams defense with 12 tackles on the day.