MILTON, Mass. – A 23-yard touchdown pass from Kevin Fruwirth (Agawam, Mass.) to Rob Bambini (Westwood, Mass.) with 23 seconds remaining in regulation lifted Curry College past visiting MIT, 31-28, in the New England Football Conference (NEFC) Boyd Division opener for both schools.
The first score of the game came with 3:57 left in the opening frame, after a 16-play, 77-yard drive set up a 25-yard field goal for Curry sophomore Tim Crowley (Walpole, Mass.). After forcing MIT to turn the ball over on downs, the Colonels extended their lead to 10 with 9:45 remaining in the first half. The score came on a 13-play, 83-yard drive capped off with back-to-back rushes by junior Phil Bigelow (East Orange, N.J.) for six and eight yards, respectively.
With 1:56 left in the second quarter, the Engineers answered with a touchdown of their own after a 65-yard scoring strike from sophomore Peter Williams (Portland, Ore.) to classmate Brad Goldsberry (Elizabeth, Colo.). On the following kickoff, junior Richard Johnson (Framingham, Mass.) sprinted 85 yards down field to extend Curry's lead back to 10 (17-7) heading into intermission.
With 9:33 remaining in the third frame, Goldsberry recorded his second touchdown of the game with a nine-yard rush into the end zone that capped off an eight-play, 76-yard drive. The Engineers took their first lead of the game (21-17) after Williams tossed a 50-yard touchdown to freshman Karson Ota (Katy, Texas) with just over two minutes left in the third.
The Colonels reclaimed their lead early in the fourth after Fruwirth connected with sophomore Jordan Shairs (Gloucester, Mass.) for a three-yard touchdown. MIT responded on its next possession, and with 7:28 remaining in regulation, used another Goldsberry rush ( 11 yards) to take a 28-24 lead. The Curry defense forced the Engineers to punt with just over two minutes left on the clock to set up the game- winning drive, starting from the MIT 17. On the final drive, Bigelow accounted for 14 yards on the ground, while Fruwirth threw for 54 yards, including the game-winning pass to Bambini.
The Engineers held edges in first downs (30-12), total offense (536-441) and possession time (30:55-29:03).
Fruwirth was 28-for-49 for 325 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Bigelow recorded a team-high 82 net rushing yards with a touchdown, while also reeling in five receptions for 40 yards. Bambini caught 13 passes for a game-high 221 yards and one touchdown. For MIT, Williams was 25-for-37 for 366 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Sophomore Justin Wallace (Palatine, Ill.) had a game-high 83 net rushing yards. Goldsberry had a game-high 14 receptions for 174 yards and one touchdown, while Ota recorded five catches for 115 yards and one touchdown.
On defense, Colonels' senior Jason Genece (Waltham, Mass.) amassed a game-high 10 solo tackles. Sophomore Parrish Rogers-Reed (Westfield, Mass.) added nine solo tackles, including two tackles for loss (-2 yards). Engineers' sophomore Cameron Wagar (West Richland, Wash.) recorded nine total tackles (8 solo) and one interception. Freshman Alex Noakes also had nine total tackles (8 solo), including 1.5 tackles for loss (-3 yards).
Both teams return to Boyd Division action next Saturday at noon as Curry travels to Endicott and MIT hosts UMass Dartmouth.