WASHINGTON, D.C. – It was a record setting day for the Gallaudet University football team on Saturday at Hotchkiss Field before a overflow Homecoming crowd of 2,000 watched the Bison defeat Anna Maria College 33-6 in an Eastern Collegiate Football Conference (ECFC) contest. The Bison (5-4, 3-3 ECFC) accumulated season highs for rushing yards (410) and total offensive yards (528) as GU stands fourth overall in the conference.
Senior Cole Johnson (Eden Prairie, Minn.) ran for a career-high 178 yards which included a 67-yard touchdown run midway through the fourth quarter to place the game out of reach. Johnson carried the ball eight times as he averaged 22.2 yards per carry.
GU senior quarterback Jimmy Gardner (St. Augustine, Fla.) completed 5-of-11 passes for 116 yards and two touchdowns both to sophomore wide receiver Ryne Worsham (Chicago, Ill.). Worsham hauled in five passes for 116 yards and two scores. Worsham caught a 20-yard pass from Gardner with 2:33 left in the first quarter to increase the Bison lead to 13-0. He then caught a 45-yard touchdown pass three minutes into the second quarter to give Gallaudet a 20-0 lead. The Bison took that 20-point lead into halftime.
Gardner carried the ball 14 times for 112 yards and one touchdown. The senior signal caller broke loose on a 40-yard run late in the third quarter, which ended with him in the end zone.
All of Gallaudet's touchdown drives came on quick strikes throughout the day. The Bison scored five touchdowns in the game and no scoring drive lasted more then two minutes.
The Bison started their scoring with a 14-yard touchdown run by sophomore Phillip Hayes (Baton Rouge, La.) with 8:05 left in the first quarter. The two-play drive took 33 seconds and covered 37 yards. The Worsham touchdown passes were part of two different drives that only took three plays and just over a minute to complete. The longest scoring drive for the Bison in the game was a four-play, 80-yard drive by the Buff and Blue in the fourth quarter where Johnson scored a 67-yard touchdown run.
Gallaudet's defense was dominate against the AMCATS (0-9, 0-6 ECFC) as the Bison made 80 tackles, 15 tackles for a loss of 90 yards, seven sacks for a loss of 66 yards, two fumble recoveries and seven quarterback hurries. The Bison defense stuffed the AMCATS running game as they only mustered 21 yards. Sophomore quarterback Santino Simone was under siege the entire game as the Bison defense were frequent visitors to the AMCAT backfield. Simone finished the game 26-for-46 for 251 yards. Simone scored Anna Maria's lone points early in the fourth quarter when he ran in from a yard out to complete a 12-play, 88-yard drive. The score cut the Bison lead to 26-6.
On the day in which the Gallaudet football program paid tribute to its senior players the seniors stepped up big on the defensive side of the ball.
Senior Joshua Doudt (Medina, Ohio) led the Bison defense with 10 tackles while fellow senior Ricky Bailey (Willingboro, N.J.) led the team with 2.5 sacks for a loss of 23 yards and 3.5 tackles for a loss of 24 yards. Bailey also recovered a fumble. Senior Michel Daze' (Frederick, Md.) also came up with a sack and forced a fumble that he recovered. Gallaudet also got sacks from senior linebacker Dmitry Rossoshansky (Chicago, Ill.), junior defensive lineman Shawn Holder (Lemon Grove, Calif.) and sophomore linebacker Clayton Grossinger (Frederick, Md.).
The Bison will finish the regular-season schedule on Saturday, November 6, under the lights at Hotchkiss Field as they welcome undefeated and conference leader SUNY Maritime (9-0, 6-0 ECFC) to town.