Lewiston, Maine - Three-time defending New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) champion Trinity College dominated every phase of the game in handing the Bates College football team a 51-0 loss for the second year in a row on Saturday at Garcelon Field. The Bantams, who improve to 3-2, led, 30-0, at halftime with a 17-to-0 advantage in first downs. They scored three more touchdowns in the third quarter before finishing out the game with a scoreless fourth quarter. The Bobcats fell to 0-5 and were outgained by a 416-105 margin in total offense, as a balanced Trinity attack gained 194 yards on the ground and 222 through the air. Bates will play at Williams next Saturday at 1 p.m. and Trinity will host Colby at the same time.
Trinity sophomore QB Seamus Lambert (North Andover, Mass.) completed 14-21 passes for 222 yards, four touchdowns and one interception. He handed off to classmate Tijani Harris (Hagerstown, Md.) 27 times for 139 yards and a touchdown, while senior tri-captain WR Koby Schofer (Northbridge, Mass.) caught five passes for 95 yards and two touchdowns. Bantam senior DB Matt Patry (Medfield, Mass.) returned an interception 68 yards for the first touchdown of the third quarter to make it 37-0 in the visitors' favor.
Bates was forced into its first of eight three-and-out possessions to start the game. A short punt allowed the Bantams to start their first drive at Bates' 35-yard line, and they drove as far as the 19 before settling for a 36-yard field goal by rookie J.P. Dallazem (Gainesville, Fla.) for the 3-0 lead. After a Bates three-and-out, Trinity took over at its own 40-yard line. Lambert tossed a screen pass over blitzing safety Jon Lindgren to sophomore WR DeVante Reid (London, England), set up with two blockers ahead of him. Lambert raced up the left sideline until he was knocked out of bounds at the 1 by Bates' Devin Clyburn, but Harris followed with a 1-yard plunge for a 10-0 Trinity lead.
Bates went three-and-out again on its next drive and Trinity took over at the Bobcats' 42-yard line. But after rushing for a first down at the Bates 20-yard line, Harris had the ball speared away by Bates' Anthony Costa, and Bates' Matthew Connelly recovered the ball for the Bobcats at the 30. Unfortunately for the home team, the ball was fumbled away back to the Bantams two plays later, as Lucas Folan (North Weymouth, Mass.) wrenched the ball out of Christian Sanfilippo's grasp. One possession later, the Bantams drove 61 yards on 10 plays, and Reid's four-yard rush made it 17-0 in Trinity's favor.
Trinity continued to build its lead in the second quarter, trading three-and-out possessions for Bates with touchdown-scoring drives of 57 yard on nine plays and 55 yards on seven plays. Lambert connected with Schofer on a 24-yard touchdown, lofting a pass into the back corner of the end zone where Schofer pulled it down over outstanding coverage by Lindgren. With 1:06 to go, after taking over from their own 45, the Bantams made it 30-0 as Lambert passed to a wide-open Harris against broken coverage by the Bobcats.
Trinity took a 37-0 lead after Patry's pick-six. Bates earned its first first down of the game on its next possession, on Jackson Hayes' 7-yard catch from Brendan Costa. The drive stalled, however, and a short punt gave Trinity the ball back at the 50. The Bantams marched to the end zone on 11 plays, capped by Lambert's 13-yard play-action connection with Joe Samuelman. A 46-yard run by Harris helped set up the Bantams' final touchdown. Then Lambert found Schofer open in the end zone for a second time, and their 13-yard connection made it 51-0 as time expired on the third quarter.