Football Blows By Tufts, 51-7
Contact: Ben Badua
AMHERST, Mass. - Quarterbacks Jonathan Pieterse ’16 and Max Lippe ’13 went a combined 27-of-33 for 338 yards and three touchdowns as the Amherst football team improved to 5-1 with a dominating 51-7 victory over Tufts University at Pratt Field.
Racking up 538 yards, the Jeff offense enjoyed its most productive day since gaining 632 yards in a 70-49 win over the Jumbos on Oct. 30, 2010. Amherst’s 338 yards through the air are also the most since picking up 340 yards against Bowdoin on Oct. 2 of that same season.
Completing 14-of-17 passes, Pieterse threw for 177 yards, which included a 44-yard strike to Jake O’Malley ’14. Lippe was equally efficient, going 13-for-16 for 161 yards and a rushing touchdown. O’Malley led the Jeff receiving corps with seven catches for 112 yards. Gene Garay ’15 also had a big day, pulling down 10 catches for 91 yards, while Brian Ragone ’16 chipped in with three catches for 72 yards.
Outgaining Tufts 200-103 in the rushing game, Kenny Aboagye-Adinkra ’16 and Steven Jellison ’14 combined for 78 yards and two touchdowns, while Sean Wilson ’16 picked up 43 yards on just six touches (7.2 ypc).
Taking a shot downfield on first-and-10 early in the first quarter, Lippe hit Garay down the right sideline for a 20-yard gain. Linking up with Garay on two more pass plays for 38 yards down to the Tufts’ 1-yardline, Jellison crossed the goaline at 11:41 to put the home team on the board.
Two possessions later, Amherst doubled its lead with a 10-play, 54-yard scoring drive. Facing second-and-10 from the Tufts’ 42, Garay made a nice one-handed catch on the far sideline, picking up seven yards. Jellison kept the chains moving with a seven yard run, allowing Aboagye-Adinkra to later punch it in from three yards out, making it 14-0.
Hoping to keep pace, the Jumbos answered with their first score just 1:30 later. Shifting into a wildcat formation, Zach Trause ’14 kept it on the option, taking it up the middle untouched before outracing Kevin Callahan ’14 to the end zone.
After Jake Schmidt ’14 finished off a 10-play, 47-yard drive with a 21-yard field goal that made it 17-7, Amherst marched 72-yards in just 2:34 to go up 24-7. On a second-and-3 from the Amherst 40-yardline, Lippe floated a pass to Brian Ragone ’16 on the left sideline for a 27-yard gain to the Tufts 33.
Staring at a third-and-12, Lippe again found Ragone, this time for a 24-yard pickup. Pulling it down and running on a first-and-10 from the 11, Lippe raced to the right pylon, taking it in for his third rushing touchdown of the season.
Tacking on a Schmidt 32-yarder with 35 seconds to go in the half, the Jeffs looked to carry their momentum into the third quarter. Facing a third-and-11 from the Amherst 36, Pieterse picked out O’Malley for a 28-yard gain on the near sideline, before Tom Holahan ’13 made a nice one-handed grab over the middle for 17 more yards.
After a seven-yard Aboagye-Adinkra rush, Pieterse completed a screen pass to O’Malley to set-up first-and-goal. Taking it up the middle on a designed quarterback keeper, Pieterse burst into the end zone to up the margin to 34-7.
On the Jeffs’ next possession, Pieterse needed just three plays to once again find pay dirt, tossing a 44-yard touchdown pass to O’Malley down the left side after a pair of Aboaye-Adinkra three-yard gains.
With Tufts moving the ball 47 yards into Amherst territory on the ensuing possession, it was the defense’s turn to make a big play. Taking advantage of an errant John Dodds ’13 throw, Danny Chun ’14 took a pick-six 72 yards the other way to extend the Jeff lead to 48-7. Pinning the Jumbos at the one-yard line with just over nine minutes to go in the fourth, Benji Sklar ’14 forced a fumble that was recovered by Max Lehrman ’15, setting up a 20-yard Will Brewster ’15 field goal that capped off the scoring.
Keeping what had been the league’s second-ranked passing attack under wraps for most of the afternoon, the Jeffs limited Tufts to just 88 yards through the air, while Chun and Michael Aldo ’13 nabbed a pair of interceptions. Holding the Jumbos under 200 yards of total offense, Travis Dickenson ’13 and Aldo each made four tackles, with Dickenson recording the game’s lone sack.
Dodds finished just 11-of-25 for 83 yards and a pair of interceptions, while Dylan Haas ’13 led all Tufts receivers with four catches for 51 yards. Trause picked up 47 yards on the ground despite just five carries (9.4), while Ryan Pollock ’14 finished with 21 yards on nine touches (2.3 ypc).
Amherst returns to action on Saturday, Nov. 3 at Trinity.