Miller Returns Fumble for 71 Yard Score in Finale
(Carlisle, Pa.) – The Dickinson College football team suffered a 34-16 setback in the season finale, falling to visiting Ursinus on Saturday.
The Devils won the toss and elected to receive. It was Ursinus who would strike first however, as Chris Roundtree returned an interception 75 yards to put the Bears up 7-0.
Dickinson had a much better result on its next possession as first-year Cole Ahnell (Rockville, Md./Walter Johnson) connected with senior Cam Di Fede (Miami, Fla./Palmer Trinity), who made a spectacular finger-tip catch and scored on a 44 yard pass play to pull the Devils even.
The Bears opened the second quarter with a 16-play, 70-yard scoring drive that drained almost eight minutes off the clock. The Devils were forced to punt and Ursinus would capitalize, adding another scoring drive to stretch the margin to 17-7 with just 2:41 remaining in the half.
The Devils were forced to punt once again but quickly regained possession as first-year Mitch Helmandollar (Glenolden, Pa./Interboro) intercepted a pass in the end zone on the Bears' first place from scrimmage. The Bears would hold once again, however, and take over on their own 39 with 48 second on the clock.
A bad snap slipped through the hands of Chris Curran and onto the turf. As players dove on the ball it was sophomore Michael Miller (Hainesport, N.J./Bishop Eustace) who scooped it up and headed down the field. He would cover 71 yards for the touchdown, marking the fifth longest fumble return for a score in program history. The half would end with the Devils now just trailing, 17-13.
The Bears' Al Desiderio took the opening kick-off into the end zone for a touchdown but the play was nullified by offsetting penalties, resulting in another kick-off. This time the Bears made it halfway as Mike Rissmiller returned the kick to the 48 yard line.
Desiderio would make up for his nullified touchdown return with a 24-yard scoring catch to stretch the Bears' lead to 24-16 with 10:18 to play in the third quarter. The Devils answered with a 33-yard field-goal from senior David London (Chevy Chase, Md./The Maret School).
Dickinson would gain some momentum, stopping the Bears' on a 4th-and-1, taking over on their own 22 yard line. The teams would trade punts to close out the third quarter with Ursinus on top, 24-16. They tacked on a 37-yard field-goal from Michael Bennett at the 9:02 mark of the fourth quarter.
The teams traded punts with Ursinus taking over on their own 28 yard line. They moved 61 yards on eight plays to tack on another score for the final of 34-16.
Ahnell threw for 134 yards, completing 12-of-22 attempts. Di Fede finished with 76 yards receiving on just five catches, adding a touchdown. Defensively, Julian Rosen (Brecksville, Ohio/The University School) tallied a game-high 12 tackles, including two for losses. Senior Scott Sullivan (Coatesville, Pa./Bishop Shanahan) added 11 stops, including 10 solo tackles while Miller finished with 10 tackles and the 71-yard fumble return.
Bryan Ellis led the Bears with 155 yards rushing on 31 carries while Curran completed 18-of-26 passes for 184 yards. Kahlil Pittman made six catches for 76 yards. Chris Salaga anchored the defense with 10 stops, including two for losses.
The Red Devils close out the season 4-6 overall and 4-5 in the Centennial Conference.