Ithaca 28, Union 20

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ITHACA, N.Y. — The Ithaca Bombers (2-0) jumped out to a 28-7 lead and withstood a late rally by the visiting Union Dutchmen (0-1) to post a 28-20 win Saturday. The Dutchmen scored two fourth-quarter touchdowns in a 4:24 span and had two more possessions after closing to within eight points, but Ithaca didn't allow a first down on either drive.

Senior quarterback Rob Zappia (Greece Athena/Rochester) ran for a touchdown and threw for a career-high 242 yards and senior wideout Thomas Vossler (Saranac Lake/Loon Lake) caught a pair of scores. The Bomber defense forced 10 punts and held Union to two-of-13 efficiency on third down and 14 first downs.

Zappia capped a 10-play, 79-yard drive with a one-yard touchdown run – the first of his career – early in the second quarter and threw his first career touchdown pass, covering 13 yards to Vossler, two possessions later. Vossler finished with eight catches for 104 yards; he raised his total to 100 career receptions (he's the seventh Bomber to reach that total) with the milestone catch coming on his second touchdown – a 41-yard reception from senior wide receiver Dan Ruffrage (Utica Notre Dame/Whitesboro) on the opening drive of the second half.

After Ithaca scored its final touchdown on a one-yard run by sophomore Clay Ardoin (Dolgeville/Dolgeville) midway through the third quarter, the Dutchmen rallied, scoring a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns. Junior quarterback Drew Connolly (Foxboro/Taft/Foxboro, Mass.) threw a 27-yard touchdown pass to junior receiver Connor Gallo (Lansingburgh/Troy) six seconds into the final period and a 31-yard touchdown to Chris Vazquez (Bergen Catholic/Elmwood Park, N.J.) 4:24 later. Union's two scoring drives needed just 12 plays to cover a combined 149 yards.

The Dutchmen forced a Bomber punt, but Ithaca ran 6:24 off the clock while running 10 plays. Led by senior end Matt Dibble (Columbia/East Schodack) and junior linebacker Eric Toporoff (Montvale Township/Towaco, N.J.), the Bomber defense forced their seventh three-and-out of the game; the two combined to tackle tailback Chris Coney (Westminster Academy/Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) for no gain on first down, Dibble hit Connolly to force an incompletion on second down and Toporoff broke through the line to knock down a third-down pass. Union's defense held again but the Dutchmen called their last timeout during Ithaca's final drive and they took over on their own 20 with 73 seconds left. After a botched snap led to Connolly being sacked by Dibble and sophomore linebacker Will Carter (Westlake/Thornwood), junior cornerback Spence White (Sleepy Hollow/Yonkers) sealed Ithaca's in with a sideline interception and a return to the Union six.

The win snapped a three-game Bomber losing streak to Union and puts Ithaca up 4-3 in the all-time series. The meeting was just the second in Ithaca, where the Dutchmen have never won.

Toporoff led Ithaca's defense with nine tackles (two for loss) and a pair of pass break-ups. Carter, senior defensive end Sean Gil (Sachem North/Holbrook) and junior linebacker Joe Gilfedder (Governor Livingston/Berkeley Heights, N.J.) added seven apiece, with Gilfedder collecting three tackles for loss and Gil recording two.

Connolly threw for 223 yards, completing 16 of 33 attempts. His nine-yard pass to senior wide receiver Justin Gallo (Lansingburgh/Troy) put Union on the scoreboard 18 seconds before halftime, capping a six-play, 64-yard drive that took just 38 seconds.

Justin Gallo caught seven passes for a game-high 110 yards. Coney, who ran for 1,164 yards last fall, was held to 38 yards on 14 carries. As a team, Union ran for only 78 yards on 23 carries.

Senior defensive back Anthony Cassese (Gilmour Academy/Wickliffe, Ohio) and senior linebacker AJ Rocchio (Bergen Catholic/Glen Rock, N.J.) led Union with 14 tackles each.

The Bombers travel to Widener next Saturday; the Dutchmen are idle.

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Box Score
Union vs. Ithaca (09/11/10 at Ithaca, N.Y.)

Score by Quarters 1 2 3 4 Score
----------------- -- -- -- -- -----
Union............... 0 7 0 13 - 20 Record:
Ithaca.............. 0 14 14 0 - 28 Record:

Scoring Summary:
2nd 09:01 IC - Rob ZAPPIA 1 yd run (Andrew ROGOWSKI kick), 10-79 5:52, UN 0 - IC 7
01:01 IC - Thomas VOSSLER 13 yd pass from Rob ZAPPIA (Andrew ROGOWSKI kick), 6-39 3:24, UN 0 - IC 14
00:18 UN - Justin Gallo 9 yd pass from Drew Connolly (Blaise Ancona kick), 6-64 0:47, UN 7 - IC 14
3rd 12:57 IC - Thomas VOSSLER 41 yd pass from Dan RUFFRAGE (Andrew ROGOWSKI kick), 5-66 2:10, UN 7 - IC 21
07:31 IC - Clay ARDOIN 1 yd run (Andrew ROGOWSKI kick), 6-43 3:50, UN 7 - IC 28
4th 14:54 UN - Connor Gallo 27 yd pass from Drew Connolly (Mitch Pfeiffer rush fumbld), 7-72 2:54, UN 13 - IC 28
10:30 UN - Chris Vazquez 31 yd pass from Drew Connolly (Blaise Ancona kick), 5-77 2:01, UN 20 - IC 28

FIRST DOWNS................... 13 19
RUSHES-YARDS (NET)............ 23-58 37-133
PASSING YDS (NET)............. 223 283
Passes Att-Comp-Int........... 33-16-1 32-22-0
TOTAL OFFENSE PLAYS-YARDS..... 56-281 69-416
Fumble Returns-Yards.......... 0-0 0-0
Punt Returns-Yards............ 2-5 8-145
Kickoff Returns-Yards......... 5-93 4-91
Interception Returns-Yards.... 0-0 1-22
Punts (Number-Avg)............ 10-40.1 6-39.7
Fumbles-Lost.................. 1-0 1-1
Penalties-Yards............... 3-14 5-43
Possession Time............... 20:53 39:22
Third-Down Conversions........ 2 of 13 5 of 14
Fourth-Down Conversions....... 1 of 1 1 of 1
Sacks By: Number-Yards........ 0-0 1-10

RUSHING: Union-Chris Coney 14-38; Drew Connolly 5-10; Connor Gallo 1-5; Kyle Holmes 2-4; Justin Gallo 1-1.
Ithaca-Clay ARDOIN 18-54; Dan RUGGIERO 12-53; Rob ZAPPIA 5-27; Jared PRUGAR 1-0; TEAM 1-minus 1.

PASSING: Union-Drew Connolly 16-33-1-223.
Ithaca-Rob ZAPPIA 21-31-0-242; Dan RUFFRAGE 1-1-0-41.

RECEIVING: Union-Justin Gallo 7-110; Chris Vazquez 3-68; Connor Gallo 2-39; Chris Coney 2-minus 2; Kyle Holmes 1-4; Chase Richey 1-4.
Ithaca-Thomas VOSSLER 8-104; Dan HIGGINS 5-77; Dan RUFFRAGE 4-63; Matthew HANNON 2-20; Joseph INGRAO 1-12; Andre JAMISON 1-6; Michael MOON 1-1.

INTERCEPTIONS: Union-None. Ithaca-Spence WHITE 1-22.

FUMBLES: Union-Cam Johnson 1-0. Ithaca-Dan RUFFRAGE 1-1.

SACKS (UA-A): Union-None. Ithaca-Matt DIBBLE 0-1; Will CARTER 0-1.

TACKLES (UA-A): Union-Anthony Cassese 7-7; AJ Rocchio 4-10; St.Modliszewski 4-5; Jon Campbell 2-4; Nick Poli 3-1; Jonathan Stidd 3-1; Chris Gross 2-2; Kevin Quillinan 1-3; Cam Johnson 3-0; JP Sticco 2-1; Sergi Filinow 1-2; An.Trochanowski 1-2; Mike Miller 1-2; Chris Paine 0-3; Sam Goldman 1-1; Hutton Rasmus 1-1; Sean Conerly 0-2; Richard Sixto 0-2; Noah Joseph 1-0; Josh Angoff 1-0; Phil Barr 0-1.
Ithaca-Eric TOPOROFF 6-3; Joe GILFEDDER 2-5; Sean GIL 2-5; Will CARTER 0-7; Matt DIBBLE 2-3; Spence WHITE 3-1; Mike CONTI 1-2; Ryan CLARKE 2-0; Kevin CLINE 1-1; David AHONEN 0-2; Jake SANTORA 1-0; Pat SCOTT 1-0; M. ABDELNOUR 0-1; Myron AVANT 0-1; Andrew HAIM 0-1.

Maintenance in progress.
Dec. 9: All times Eastern
Mount Union 43, at UW-Oshkosh 40
Box Score Recap Recap Photos
at Mary Hardin-Baylor 24, Brockport 0
Box Score Recap Photos
Dec. 15: All times Eastern
Mount Union 12, at Mary Hardin-Baylor 0
@ Salem, Va.
Video Box Score Recap Photos