BEVERLY, Mass. – The Endicott football team used a stifling defense down the stretch and a go-ahead two-yard rushing touchdown from Anthony Whiteley (Pittsfield, Mass.) in the third quarter to earn a hard-fought 27-24 victory over Hobart on Saturday afternoon at Hempstead Stadium.
Whiteley's two-yard plunge at 6:12 of the third quarter erased a slim 21-20 deficit for the Gulls, at the time, and then the rest of the game belonged to the defense.
After Whiteley's touchdown, Endicott forced Hobart to punt on its next drive in quick fashion via four plays (17 yards). The difference in the drive came when William Rivera (Orangeburg, N.Y.) stuffed a running attempt for a five-yard loss on 2nd-and-3. Ayinde Johnson (Norwalk, Conn.) also swallowed up a completed pass for no gain to induce a punt by the Statesmen.
Hobart's next drive featured eight plays for a total of 61 yards but Endicott cornerback Jesse Simoni (East Greenbush, N.Y.) made the biggest play of the entire sequence when he broke up a potential go-ahead touchdown pass in the right corner of the end zone on a fade route on 4th-and-7 from Endicott's own 21-yard line.
A quick fumble by the Gulls at their own 21-yard line on the first play of their ensuing drive posed danger, however, the defense held true once again as Connor Schinderman (Chappaqua, N.Y.) and Allen Gibson (Seymour, Conn.) stonewalled a rush attempt on 2nd-and-5 for a one-yard loss. Schinderman immediately followed that play with another defensive gem on the next down by breaking up a pass intended for an open receiver over the middle to force Hobart to attempt – and make – a 34-yard field goal.
From there, Endicott's defense needed one more stop with 2:11 remaining in the contest after the offense killed 5:45 off the clock in the final quarter. The Gulls did exactly that using three pass breakups along the way – including one from Christian Pizzotti (Melrose, Mass.) that prevented a potential first down play on 3rd-and-10 from Hobart's 15-yard line to help seal the victory.
John Glaser's (East Moriches, N.Y.) punt also played a big factor in the final defensive stop as the junior punter pinned Hobart on its own five-yard line (38-yard punt).
BEYOND THE BOX SCORE
- Endicott only trailed for a total of 2:19 in the contest.
- The Gulls compiled a season-high 409 yards on offense (216 yards rushing, 229 yards passing)
- Endicott limited Hobart to 19 yards rushing (second-worst output this season).
- The Gulls earned their first victory in the all-time series against Hobart today (1-4 all-time).
- Joe Kalosky (Plymouth, Conn.) completed 16 passes on 25 attempts for 193 yards and one touchdown pass (also one interception).
- John Kenney (Wilmington, Mass.) eclipsed the 100-yard rushing mark for the first time in his career with 128 yards total and a touchdown score on 25 attempts. Kenney put Endicott ahead 7-0 with a 27-yard dash at 12:04 of the first quarter.
- Riley Shanley (Simsbury, Conn.) caught three passes for 26-yards, which included a six-yard touchdown reception at 9:35 of the second to put Endicott ahead 17-0, at the time.
- Shea McManaway (Lisbon, Conn.) hauled in seven catches for 120 yards. Both were career-highs, while his yardage total also served as the game-high for all receivers in the contest.
- Whiteley registered 53 yards on 10 attempts, which included his second career TD score late in the third.
- Nick DiCairano (Trumbull, Conn.) went 2-for-2 on field goal attempts (27 yards, 5:44 of the 1st, 10-0 lead | 41 yards, 12:25 of the third, 20-14 lead) and also connected on all three of his extra points.
- Defensively, George Balian (Burlington, Mass.) tied for the game-high in tackles with 10 (six solo, four assisted). Balian also broke up Hobart's final pass attempt of the game to wrap-up the win.
- Rivera and Kevin O'Brien (Braintree, Mass.) finished second on the team with seven tackles, respectively.
- O'Brien also picked off one pass for 19 yards, while Noah Fearnley (Orange, Conn.) had one interception of his own as well. Both interceptions set up each of DiCairano's field goals.
- As a team, Endicott compiled nine pass breakups.
- Ryan Hoffman (Lindenhurst, N.Y.) completed 29 of his 50 passing attempts, totaling 294 yards, alongside three touchdowns and two interceptions.
- Jake Catalioto (Ringwood, N.J.) caught a game-high eight passes for 71 yards and a touchdown (14-seconds remaining in the second quarter, 17-14 deficit).
- Ray Conley (Lyndhurst, N.J.) gave Hobart the lead at 21-20 with a 16-yard touchdown catch at 8:29 of the third. He finished the game with seven catches for a team-high 91 yards.
- Matthew Woods (Latham, N.Y.) notched four catches for 49 yards and one touchdown (4:21 in the second quarter, 17-7 deficit).
- Bryan Aguilar (Oceanside, N.Y.) posted a game-high 10 tackles (seven solo, three assisted, two tackles for a loss).
Endicott (2-2) to Curry College on Saturday, September 29 at 1 PM. Hobart (2-2) hosts Union on October 6 at 12 PM.
(Photo Credit - Nick Grace)