NEWTON, Mass. – The Gallaudet University football team faced a tough task on Saturday on the road against Eastern Collegiate Football Conference (ECFC) foe Mount Ida College. The Bison entered with the second best offense in the conference (averaging 387 yards per game) but was hindered without the services of their top two quarterbacks as the Mustangs foiled the GU offense and held them to a season-low 197 yards of offense. Mount Ida (5-4, 4-2 ECFC) ran over the Gallaudet (5-4, 4-2) defense behind senior running back Johrone Bunch (34 carries, 160 yards, two touchdowns) en route to a 28-12 win before a crowd of 500.
Gallaudet was able to hang with Mount Ida for most of the game until the Mustangs pulled away late in the third quarter. GU junior quarterback Anthony Palmer (Unadilla, N.Y.) was intercepted by Jovan Wilkins at the Bison 31-yard line, Wilkins returned the pick 27 yards to the GU 4. The Mustangs scored three plays later when Bunch threw a touchdown pass on a halfback option to Nick Lynch to increase the Ida lead to 21-12 with 2:37 left in the third quarter.
GU finished the game with 161 yards passing with a season high of 28 attempts. The Bison were forced to take to the air as their ground game was stifled against the Mustangs. Mount Ida held the Bison to a season-low 36 rushing yards; the first time Gallaudet has not reached over 100 yards on the ground this season. The Mustangs were able to rush on the tough Bison defense as they totaled 167 yards on the ground, which is the second most allowed by Gallaudet this season. Mount Ida was able to total 186 passing yards on 14-of-22.
The Bison began the game with the ball as Palmer (12-for-28, 161 yards, two touchdowns, one interception) started under center. After going three-and-out and being forced to punt Gallaudet's defense made the first big play of the game. On an early fourth down and two, backed up on their own 15-yard line the Bison were able to stop the Mustangs offense as John Van Wey (Alexandria, Va.) stuffed Bunch for a loss of a yard to turn the ball over on downs.