NEWTON, Mass. – Freshman quarterback Jack Sheehan (St. Petersburg, Fla.) tossed the first touchdown of his collegiate career, but it was not enough to help Mount Ida College beat visiting Springfield College, who defeated the Mustangs 38-10 on Saturday afternoon in non-conference football action at Alumni Field.
The Mustangs (0-3) took a 3-0 lead on a 23-yard field goal by Tyler Rogers (Bridgewater, Mass.), but then gave up 24 straight points and went into halftime trailing the Pride 24-3, as Springfield improved to 2-1 on the year.
Sheehan threw for 123 yards and hit sophomore Nick Hewitt (Killingly, Conn.) on a five-yard slant pass early in the fourth quarter for a touchdown, but the Pride had already opened up a three-score lead thanks to one passing and two rushing touchdowns from sophomore quarterback Jake Eglintine (Gansevoort, N.Y.) in the first half.
Eglintine ran for 92 yards and two scores and opened the Pride scoring at 4:53 of the first quarter when he hit Steve Comee (Agawam, Mass.) across the middle for a 27-yard touchdown on the first play from scrimmage of Springfield's third offensive series.
Eglintine scored his first rushing touchdown at 12:43 of the second quarter when he rushed for one yard after the Pride were set up in good scoring position by a 24 yard scamper from sophomore Jonny Bianchi (Pittsfield, Mass.).
Four minutes later, it was Eglintine rushing three straight times, for three, eight and then 29 yards, as he broke a big run down the right sideline and into the end zone.
Mount Ida took the ball into the Springfield end of the field late in the second quarter, but Sheehan's pass was intercepted by junior Michael Barbuto (New Rochelle, N.Y.), one of three turnovers for the Mustangs, who did take away three fumbles themselves from Springfield's offense.
Two of those fumbles were recovered by Ty Singletary (Newark, N.J.), who also had nine tackles in the loss.
Freshman Blake Heller (North Bellmore, N.Y.), who was 5-5 on extra points, added a 31 yard field goal at the final horn of the first half to send the visitors to the locker room with a 24-3 advantage.
Neither team scored in the third quarter, but it was a fumble by Springfield senior Drew Brown (Barrington, R.I.) late in that period that was recovered by Delvin Hilario (New York, N.Y.) and set up Mount Ida for their strike just 41 seconds into the fourth. Rogers added the extra point for Mount Ida, who got to within two touchdowns.
The margin was short-lived, however, as Springfield took just 40 seconds and two plays from scrimmage to return the favor. Senior Keith Rodman (Northvale, N.J.) broke off a run for 59 of his 92 yards to put the Pride at the Mount Ida 9 on the first play after the kickoff, and Bianchi rumbled in the final nine yards on the next play.
The Mustangs gave the ball back again, as Jared Lucas (Queens, N.Y.), who had seven tackles and a pass breakup, fumbled the ensuing kickoff and Springfield's Rob Mendoza (Yorktown Heights, N.Y.) recovered the ball at the Mount Ida 20, but Heller missed a field goal attempt from 30 yards later in the drive to prevent further damage to the Mustangs.
Springfield capped their scoring at 3:36 left to play when Zach Dubiel (Standish, Maine) rushed from three yards out after Vin Nardini (Brewster, N.Y.) had recovered a Melquawn Pinkney (Springfield, Mass.) fumble at the Mount Ida twenty yard line.
Nardini had three tackles, and a sack, while Christian Zotti (Newington, Conn.) and Max Nacewicz (Sandy Hook, Conn.) led the Pride with six tackles apiece.
Sean Chinova (Watertown, Conn.) paced Mount Ida with 13 tackles, 2.5 for a loss of 12 yards.
Sophomore Travis O'Brien (Portsmouth, R.I.) led the Mount Ida rushing attack with 44 yards on 10 carries, while Pinkney gained 28 yards. Zach Samiljan (Sparta, N.J.) was the leading receiver for the hosts, grabbing three balls for 59 yards, including the long on the day, a 37 yard hookup with Sheehan.
Mount Ida will enjoy a bye week this coming Saturday and continue to prepare for their Eastern Collegiate Football Conference (ECFC) opener, which comes in two weeks at home against Gallaudet (October 3rd at 1:00 pm).
The Pride open up Liberty League play next Saturday afternoon when they travel to Rochester for a 12:00 pm start.