Air Attack Propels Football to 33-28 Victory at Bates College

LEWISTON, Maine – Tufts University quarterbacks Jacob Carroll and Trevon Woodson passed for 276 yards and three touchdowns as the Jumbo football team spoiled Homecoming at Bates College with a 33-28 win over the Bobcats on Saturday at Garcelon Field.

Winton Blount had one of Tufts' three touchdown receptions at Bates.

Carroll, who passed for 305 yards and two scores last week against Amherst, connected on 16 of 21 attempts for 223 yards and two touchdowns today. The freshman Woodson threw his first collegiate touchdown pass while going 5 for 6 for 53 yards.

The long pass continued to be a major weapon for the Jumbos (2-2). Carroll threw a 70-yard touchdown pass to graduate Frank Roche in the third quarter that gave Tufts a 17-14 lead. Woodson connected on a 41-yard TD to junior Brendan Dolan stretching Tufts' advantage to 33-14 in the fourth quarter. A 69-yard completion from Carroll to senior Dom Borelli set up a second-quarter field goal that gave Tufts a 10-8 lead at the half.

Borelli caught four passes for 97 yards (24.3-yard average) and Roche had three receptions for 89 yards (29.7). Carroll also had a 17-yard TD pass to senior Winton Blount early in the fourth.

Bates (0-4) was led by three rushing touchdowns from junior Christian Sanfilippo.

The Jumbo defense had an early fourth-down tackle for a loss by sophomore Jovan Nenadovic on their own 22-yard line which turned the ball over on downs. The first quarter went scoreless.

Early in the second, a 50-yard punt by Jumbo freshman Patrick Walsh gave Bates possession at their own 28-yard line. The Tufts defense then forced a punt during which Bates had a kick-catching interference penalty which gave the Jumbos the ball at midfield. Five plays into the drive, Tufts junior Mike Pedrini ran for a 36-yard touchdown that opened the scoring at 10:49 of the second quarter.

Bates answered with a 12-play, 75-yard scoring drive capped by Sanfilippo's four-yard touchdown with 3:33 until halftime. The Bobcats executed an option play for a two-point conversion as senior Matt Golden pitched the ball to senior Zach Doyon, who ran it in putting Bates up 8-7.

The 69-yard pass play from Carroll to Borelli went all the way down to the Bates four-yard line. The Bobcat defense stiffened and the Jumbos settled for a 21-yard field goal by junior Matt Alswanger at 1:30 of the second quarter for a 10-8 halftime lead.

The second half would prove to be much more action-packed. The teams traded the lead on the first two possessions. Sanfilippo scored on a one-yard run at 8:39 of the third capping a lengthy Bates drive. However, Jumbo senior Stephen Timmins blocked the extra point and the hosts held a 14-10 lead. Tufts then had the 70-yard Carroll to Roche touchdown play on the ensuing possession to go back ahead 17-14 at 6:10 of the third.

A dramatic series of events over the next six-plus minutes would favor the Jumbos. On the ensuing kickoff, the ball dropped at the Bates seven without anyone touching it. Junior Jaason Lopez charged toward the ball at the last minute, getting a hand on it, but he couldn't secure it and Jumbo junior Steve Barsky recovered the loose ball at the Bobcat 12. The Jumbos would have first and goal from the Bates 2-yard line, but could not put it in and turned the ball over on downs.

Timmins then made another key play for Tufts when he tackled Bates junior running back Liam Spillane in the end zone for a safety giving the Jumbos a 19-14 advantage with 2:51 left in the third quarter.

Tufts started to pull away at that point. After the free kick, they went 60 yards in nine plays culminating in Blount's 17-yard touchdown reception for a 26-14 lead 14 seconds into the fourth. The Jumbo D then forced a three-and-out, leading to a Woodson-led scoring drive that was finished by the 41-yard touchdown pass to Dolan, who pinballed off Bates defenders all the way to the end zone. With 23 unanswered points, Tufts was up 33-14 with 10:05 remaining in regulation.

However, Bates did not roll over. They went 75 yards on seven plays on their next possession, with Sanfilippo's third touchdown (one yard) pulling the hosts within 33-20 at 7:51 of the fourth. After a Tufts punt, Bates drove 60 yards on nine plays with a 24-yard TD completion to junior WR Parker Smith from junior QB Brendan Costa. Costa then passed to sophomore WR Derek Marino for a two-point conversion and it was a 33-28 game with 2:57 on the clock.

The Bobcats attempted an on-side kick that was recovered by Tufts. However, the Jumbos could not get a first down and Bates had one more crack at it starting at their own 12-yard line. They got one first down during the drive, but could not convert on a fourth and 10 from the 29 and Tufts sealed the victory.

Pedrini ran the ball 13 times for 63 yards and a score for the Jumbos. Defensively, Jumbo Greg Holt led all players with 11 tackles including 1.5 for losses. Nenadovic, junior Quinn Fay and sophomore Uzochi Oparaji all had seven stops for Tufts.

Bates' Costa completed 19-28 passes for 200 yards and a touchdown and also rushed eight times for a team-high 62 yards as well. Bates outgained the Jumbos, tallying 373 yards of total offense to Tufts' 366. Bulman led Bates with 10 tackles, including five solo stops. Sophomore Nolan Potter had a nice day with six tackles, including one sack.

The Jumbos play their annual night game with Wesleyan next Saturday in Middletown, Connecticut at 6 pm. Bates hosts Trinity next Saturday at 1 pm.