LEICESTER, Mass.- Mount Ida running back Chris McNally (Bourne, Mass.) rushed ran for 142 yards and two touchdowns to power the Mustangs to a 36-25 win over Becker College in Eastern Collegiate Football Conference action Saturday afternoon at Alumni Field. The win ups the Mustangs record to 4-2 (3-1 ECFC), while the Hawks fall to 1-6 (0-4 ECFC).
Becker got on the board on their second possession of the game when Bobby Baker (Monroe, Conn.) connected with Thomas DeCanio (Staten Island, N.Y.) for three yard touchdown pass. The extra point attempt came up short as Becker took a 6-0 advantage. On the Mustangs next possession, Becker defensive back Deven Roberts (South Bound Brook, N.J.) stepped in front of a Jawad Yatim (Shrewsbury, Mass.) pass attempted and took it 20 yards to pay dirt to give the Hawks a 12-0 lead.
The Mustangs cut the Becker lead in half when Yatim hit Jordan Hyman (Middletown, Conn.) on a 53 yard touchdown strike with 00:53 remaining in the first quarter. Mount Ida tied the game with 4:07 remaining in the first half when Chris McNally scampered into the end zone from 10 yards out.
Becker responded on their next possession when Baker found DeCanio for his second touchdown of the game, giving the Hawks an 18-12 advantage with 1:51 remaining in the half.
The score remained the same until Yatim hit freshman wide receiver Matt Greenman (Portsmouth, R.I.) for six yard touchdown pass, tying the game at 18-18 with 3:06 remaining in the third quarter.
The Mustangs took their first lead of the game when McNally powered his way into the end zone from seven yards out, making the score 24-18 in favor of Mount Ida. Becker regained the lead on their next possession when Baker hit Dejahn Dawkins (East Hartford, Conn.) down the near sideline for a 25 yard touchdown completion. The extra point by Dawkins was good as Becker took a slim 25-24 lead with 10:32 remaining in regulation.
On the Mustangs next drive they went 71 yards on seven plays to take a 30-25 lead. The drive was capped off with a Yatim to Bryan Stetson (Cranston, R.I.) shuffle pass for the go ahead touchdown. The Mustangs clinched the victory when Yatim called his own number on a five yard quarterback keeper, making the final 36-25.
Yatim finished the game with 156 passing yards and three touchdowns. Jordan Hyman led all receivers with six catches for 128 yards. The Mount Ida defense was led by sophomore Dominque Spaulding (West Hartford, Conn.) with six tackles, including two tackles for a loss. Jon Proto (North Haven, Conn.) chipped in with four tackles, including two sacks for minus 17 yards. The Mount Ida defense recorded five sacks on Becker quarterback Bobby Baker.
Baker finished the game with 131 passing yards and three touchdowns. Romario Vincent rushed seven times for 57 yards. Dejahn Dawkins pulled in four completions for 69 yards to lead the Hawks receiving corps. The Becker defense was led by senior linebacker Melvin Booker with a game high 13 tackles. Josh Lawrence (Manhattan, N.Y.) and Michael Calafiore (Franklin, N.J.) each registered seven tackles and one and a half tackles for a loss. Defensive backs Deven Robers and Shane Balestracci (Pawcatuck, Conn.) each nabbed interceptions.
Both teams return to the gridiron next Saturday, November 2 when they continue Eastern Collegiate Football action. Becker will host unbeaten Gallaudet University at 12:00 p.m., while Mount Ida returns home to face Norwich University at 12:00 p.m.