SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – October 27, 2007 – Junior quarterback Dan Juvan passed for 308 yards and a career-high-tying four touchdowns to lead the Ithaca College football team to a 48-21 Empire 8 conference victory over Springfield College this afternoon at SC’s rain-soaked Amos Alonzo Stagg Field.
With the victory, Ithaca is now 6-2 overall, and 3-2 in the Empire 8. Ithaca thus clinches its 37th straight winning season, the second-longest such streak on any level in college football. Springfield, meanwhile, falls to 3-5 overall, 1-3 in conference play. The best SC can do now is to finish .500, but must win its final two games in order to do so.
Juvan’s TD passes were of 9, 58, 11, and 20 yards. The junior from Dobbs Ferry, N.Y. was 19-of-27 for 308 yards and four TDs with one interception on the afternoon.
Despite the loss, one special note occurred for Springfield as senior QB Chris Sharpe (Derry, N.H.) ran for 64 yards and passed for another 44, producing 108, and setting a Springfield College career total offense record. He now has 4,957 yards, breaking Ryan Sylvia’s (2001-2004) all-time mark of 4,950.
The first quarter ended in Springfield’s favor, 14-7. Senior RB Derron Walker (White Plains, N.Y.) scored a pair of touchdowns (10 and 6 yards) on similar runs around left end. His first came with 10:54 remaining as SC put together a 9-play, 59-yard TD drive right off the bat. He later scored with 5:27 left in that quarter, capping a 10-play, 65-yard march. In between, however, talented senior RB Jamie Donovan (Washington, D.C.) ran for a 33-yard TD scamper for the Bombers. That TD was set up by a 27-yard completion on the previous play from Duvon to junior TE Brian Weverbergh (Westport, Conn.).
Ithaca’s freshman placekicker Dillon Dwyer (Garden City, N.Y.) booted home a 26-yard field goal with 6:32 left in the half to make it 14-10, Springfield. From this point on it became the Duvon-to-Hogan show. Late in the first half, Ithaca took over on its own 14-yard line, but moved down the field undaunted to score with just 31 seconds remaining. Duvon found senior wide receiver Brian Hogan (Jamison, Pa.) on a 9-yard slant and the first of his three TD receptions. That touchdown put Ithaca ahead for good. The Bombers faked the extra point kick, and a run failed, keeping it 16-14, Ithaca, at the half.
Ithaca began the second half by setting up shop at its own 42 following the kickoff return. One play later, Duvon hit Hogan in stride for a 58-yard TD bomb. Dwyer’s extra point gave Ithaca a 23-14 lead with 14:45 left in the third period.
Just two plays and 23 seconds later, Pride sophomore FB Baldwin Cunningham (Manchester, Conn.) burst up the middle for a 40-yard TD scamper, and SC cut the margin to 23-21. It culminated a two-play, 45-yard drive.
But that was as close as Springfield would come the rest of the way. With 9:17 left in the third, Dwyer hit a 22-yard field goal, making it 26-21, Ithaca.
With 4:03 left in the third, Hogan scored his third TD from Juvon, this of 11 yards. That finished a 7-play, 59-yard drive. Juvon then found Juvon for a two-point conversion, and it was 34-21, Ithaca.
Following a Sharpe interception early in the fourth quarter, Juvon hit senior WR Patrick Heenehan (Franklin Lakes, N.J.) with a 20-yard scoring toss, making it 41-21. That came with 11:24 to go. With 8:01 to go, senior RB Alex Baez (Medford, N.Y.) capped the scoring with a 5-yard run.
Ithaca exploded for 527 total yards, including 308 passing and 219 rushing. Springfield, meanwhile, was held to 272 net yards, including just 228 rushing. SC was ranked fifth in the nation at 304.9 rushing yards per game entering the contest. Ithaca averaged 8.0 yards per play. Ithaca finished with 25 first downs to SC’s 14.
For Ithaca, Donovan ended with 116 yards and 1 TD rushing on 18 carries. Hogan, Weverbergh, and junior WR Kyle Crandall (Herkimer, N.Y.) all had five catches for 127, 62, and 64 yards, respectively. For Springfield, Cunningham finished with a career-high 102 yards rushing and one TD. It was his second straight 100-yard rushing effort. Walker had 41 yards rushing and two TDs on nine carries. Sharpe finished with 64 yards rushing, and was 3-of-7 for 44 yards passing with one interception.
Defensively, the leading tackler on the day was Springfield junior LB Tom Caporale (Closter, N.J.) with 13. Sophomore LB Jeff Creeden (Mansfield, Mass.) had 11, including one tackle-for-loss, plus one pass deflection. For Ithaca, the leading tackler was senior LB Mike Nowak (Ballston Spa, N.Y.) with nine, including a tackle-for-loss. Senior SS Ryan Terlecki (Fairless Hills, Pa.) and senior FS Charlie Stephens (Westport, Conn.) each followed with eight tackles.
Springfield will travel to Hartwick next Saturday at 1 pm for another Empire 8 encounter. Ithaca hosts Alfred in an important Empire 8 contest at the very same time.