Fourth Quarter Touchdown Proves To Be The Difference In 23-16 Setback to Trinity

MEDFORD –  On Parents and Family weekend at Ellis Oval / Zimman Field the Trinity football team got a fourth-quarter touchdown from running back Max Chipouras, and that proved to be the difference in a close 23-16 game with the host Jumbos.  The Jumbos had tied the game at 16 early in the fourth before the Bantams took a lead they were able to hold on to. 

Frank Roche caught four passes for 98 yards and his first TD of the year

With the setback, the Jumbos fall to 3-2 on the season, while the win moves the Bantams to 5-0 this year. 

The first quarter was a defensive showdown, as both teams had the ball three times but weren't able to generate much offense at all.  The Bantams had the ball first and put together seven plays for 38 yards, but that was the biggest gain either team would make in the first stanza as the score was locked at zero after one quarter.  On the Jumbos first possession of the game, the Jumbos quickly got two first downs, but the drive ended with McDonald's pass being intercepted by Sameir Madden, who was able to return the ball 14-yards to the Trinity 41.  

The Jumbos put points on the board on their first possession of the second half.  Starting at their own 23-yard line they got a couple of rushes from sophomore Andrew Sanders, including a 19-yard gain for a first down off a third and two.  Junior quarterback Ryan McDonald then connected with junior Frank Roche for a 39-yard pass for the first touchdown of the game.  Freshman Matthew Alswang's point after was good to give the Jumbos the 7-0 advantage. 

Starting at their own 27 after the kickoff, the Bantams looked like they were going to get something going when quarterback Sonny Puzzo found Sean Kennedy for a 40-yard gain and a first down.  But the Jumbo defense stepped up big and senior Micah Adickes tackled Puzzo trying to run for a three-yard loss and a couple of incomplete passes forced the Bantams to give the ball back to the Jumbos. 

With 5:45 remaining in the second quarter the Bantams would start with the ball on their own 13.  Max Chipouras ran the ball for nine yards and Puzzo rushed for the first down.  Puzzo then rushed for five more yards and found Joe Samuelman with a six-yard pass for another first down.  Chipouras and Puzzo combined again to rush the ball for another Bantam first down bringing the visitors to the Tufts 42 yard line. After another first down, Puzzo's 24-yard pass to Kob Schofer resulted in the first Bantam touchdown of the day.  Eric Sachse's point after was good to tie the game at seven with 1:50 remaining in the second quarter.   

The Jumbos got the ball back, and ran 51 seconds off the clock, but quickly had to give the ball back to the Bantams. With less than a minute remaining in the half, Puzzo brought his team down the field and into field goal range, sitting on the Tufts' 19 with six seconds left on the clock.  Junior Nmesoma Nwafor blocked Sachse's 36-yard field goal attempt to keep the score locked at seven heading into the half. 

To open the third quarter the Jumbos started to drive down the field, but once again McDonald was intercepted, this time by John Medina, giving the Bantams the ball back. The visitors moved down the field, and were forced by the Jumbo defense to kick a field goal once again.  But, this time Sachse missed the 35-yard attempt, and things were still tied at seven early in the third quarter. 

On their second possession of the third quarter the Jumbos got something going on offense, as McDonald connected with de Leon once for 23-yards and once for 19-yards, helping the Jumbos move down the field.  But, with the ball on the Trinity 19 McDonald's pass was intercepted by Dominique Seagers in the end zone, and Seagears ran the ball a full 100-yards for the Bantam touchdown.  On the point after attempt, the Jumbos blocked it, and junior Tim Preston picked up the ball and ran it all the way down the field for two points for the Jumbos.  The Bantams were now ahead 13-9 with a little over seven minutes remaining in the third quarter. 

The Bantams added three more points just before the end of the third with a 40-yard field goal from Sachse to put Trinity up 16-9. 

On their first possession of the fourth quarter the Jumbos went right down the field.  On a third and nine McDonald found freshman Mike Pedrini with a 26-yard pass, and then Roche caught one for a 40-yard gain to bring the Jumbos to the Trinity 22.  After a McDonald rush, and a short pass to Pedrini, Pedrini broke free with a 14-yard touchdown run and Alswang's point after was good to lock the score at 16 with just under 13 minutes left in the game.  

The Bantams answered though, marching down the field in 12 plays, the last of which was a Chipouras 1-yard run for a touchdown.  After the Sachse point after was good, the visitors were up 23-16 with just over seven minutes remaining in the game.

The Jumbos got the ball back, but they weren't able to score, and the Bantams ran some time off the clock before the Jumbos had one last chance with the ball on their own 26 and one second left on the clock.  McDonald's pass was good to junior Jack Dolan for 12-yards, but that would be it as the Bantams ended up on top 23-16. 

McDonald was 20 for 36 passing for 267 yards and a touchdown, but he also threw three interceptions.  Pedrini led the Jumbo rushers with 14 carries for 70 yards and a touchdown.  McDonald rushed the ball 12 times for 15 yards.  Roche finished the day with four catches for 98-yards and a touchdown.  Dolan caught five passes for 71 yards and de Leon finished with three catches for 58 yards. 

The Jumbos defense played well all day, holding a Trinity team that was averaging 36 points a game to just 23 points.  Senior Brett Phillips finished with 11 tackles, classmate J.P Garcia and sophomore Greg Hold each added ten of their own.  Six different Jumbos picked up sacks on the day, including 1.5 from Adickes and one each from sophomore Tylor Scales and seniors Doug Harrison,  Zach Thomas and Chuck Calabrese

Puzzo was 18 for 31 passing for 200 yards and a touchdown for the Bantams.  Chipouras led the rushing efforts with 29 carries for 165 yards and a touchdown.  Puzzo also ran the ball 21 times for 37 yards.  Schofer caught 10 passes for 86 yards and a touchdown for Trinity. 

Dago Picon-Roura led the defense efforts for the Bantams with 10 tackles and Carty Campbell and Liam Kenneally each finished with eight.  Madden, Seagears and Medina all turned in interceptions for Trinity. 

The Jumbos hit the road next Saturday for a 1:30 pm contest at Williams.  Trinity plays again next Saturday when they host Bowdoin for a 1 pm start.

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