Gallaudet wins first ECFC championship with 35-7 win over Anna Maria, win streak up to 11
WASHINGTON – As the final seconds ticked off the clock Saturday afternoon the Gallaudet University football team stormed the field with fans in tow to celebrate a historic win as the Bison clinched their first-ever Eastern Collegiate Football Conference (ECFC) championship. The undefeated Bison (9-0, 6-0 ECFC) celebrated and danced with a mob of people at midfield as the famous Gallaudet drum provided the beat to a joyous occasion for a program that has endured its fair share of losing.
The Bison defeated conference foe Anna Maria College, 35-7, before a crowd of 768 at Hotchkiss Field and increased its school-record win streak to 11 games dating back to last season. Gallaudet earns one of the 24 automatic qualifiers into the 2013 NCAA Division III football championship, which is made up of 32 teams and starts on Nov. 23. Gallaudet's football team becomes the first men's team in school history to make a NCAA tournament.
This is Gallaudet's fourth football conference championship in program history. The Bison last celebrated a title in 1998 when GU, then a club team, won the Seaboard Athletic Conference. The previous conference title for a Bison varsity football team occurred in 1989 when Gallaudet won its second straight Atlantic Collegiate Football Conference (1988, '89). GU returned to Division III status in 2007 and joined the ECFC in 2009.
The Bison look to complete a perfect season for the first-time as a varsity program next Saturday, Nov. 16, when GU takes on Maritime (N.Y.) College on the road.
Gallaudet was able to control the pace of the game as it held the ball for 40 minutes, 12 seconds. The Bison lead every NCAA school, at any level, when it comes to time of possession as they average 37:04 per game. Flores led the Bison ground attack as he gained 146 yards on 16 carries as he averaged over nine yards a carry. Right behind him was Ryan Bonheyo as he ran for 124 yards on 21 carries and three scores. As a team Gallaudet gained 386 rushing yards on the day, averaging over five yards a carry.
The Bison defense was stifling as they held the No. 3 ECFC offense to a mere 87 total offensive yards (10 net rushing yards). This includes holding the No. 1 rusher in the conference, Robert Small, to only 34 yards on 18 carries for an average of 1.9 yards per carry. Leading the Bison defense was junior linebacker Jaris Alleyne (Waldorf, Md.) who tallied seven tackles (six solo) including two sacks for a loss of 13 yards. Freshman defensive back Matt Taylor (Auburn, Kan.) pitched in with his second interception of the year, which came late in the second quarter, killing the start of an Anna Maria drive. The Bison sacked McGoldrick five times for a loss of 31 yards.
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