On an unseasonably warm September day, a combination of power running and suffocating defense gave UR football’s team a decisive 30-2 victory over the visiting Gallaudet Bison.
Final score aside, it was a slow start for the Yellowjackets. After going three and out on their opening drive, Rochester failed to capitalize on a muffed Gallaudet punt, failing to convert a fourth down on the Bison’s 17-yard line. Senior quarterback Jordan Golinowski spent the next few drives running for his life against the stout Gallaudet defensive line, while sophomore starting running back Myles Allen was held largely in check. The offense hit its nadir when Golinowski was flagged for intentional grounding just a few yards out of the end zone, resulting in a safety and the only lead for the Bison in the game.
Freshman Daniel Bronson was subbed in for Golinowski to start the second, and although he was able to breathe a little life into the offense with his legs, the Gallaudet defense simply wouldn’t budge. With 6:56 left in the second quarter, they led 2-0, and Rochester’s offense looked frustrated.
Eventually, the tough defense paid off. A stellar punt pinned the Bison at their own six yard line, and two plays later, senior defensive end James Barrett stripped Bison fullback B.J. Flores. Luckily, fellow sophomore defensive lineman Colin Woods was there to scoop up the fumble and rumble into the end zone, giving Rochester their first score and a lead they would not relinquish. Junior kicker Andrew Haber missed the PAT but would make the next three, as well as a last-second 20-yard field goal at the end of the half, giving Rochester a 9-2 lead heading into the break.
Rochester’s defense, led by Barrett and senior linebacker Zachariah Tredenick, was dominant throughout the entire game. They limited the Bison to 168 total yards, and never seemed in danger of giving up points.
The third quarter saw a totally different Yellowjackets team take the field. Golinowski, inaccurate and hurried in the first half, suddenly found himself with all kinds of time, completing 3/3 passes on the way to Rochester’s first offensive touchdown. Allen broke two tackles at the line, spinning and dodging his way to the end zone for a 33-yard score, putting Rochester up 16-2. A few minutes later, he added another touchdown, a one-yard plunge that capped off an impressive 10-play, 72-yard drive. A game that was in doubt for about 35 minutes was suddenly a 23-2 Rochester lead.
Of the early stagnant offense, head coach Scott Greene said, “You know what, our defense kept playing great. I think we turned the field a little bit, and we started getting some momentum on offense. Y’know, the run started coming…We just stayed within our game plan and kept waiting for our athletes to make plays, and they did a good job.”
Allen, who finished with 119 yards on just 17 attempts, said, “I think we came out in the second half with better intensity. Our defense definitely held us down in the first half…and we kinda followed from there.”
Substitutes took most of the reps in the fourth quarter, tacking on another touchdown on a two-yard run from Bronson.
Rochester moves to 2-0 for the first time in 14 years, and will take on Springfield College next week in their first Liberty League game.
STAT OF THE GAME: 2-16.
Sixteen times, the Gallaudet offense lined up to try and convert on third down. They were successful just twice, and Rochester’s refusal to take plays off showed why they’re a serious contender in the Liberty League this year.
QB Jordan Golinowski—18/26, 169 yards
Though he struggled early on, it was Golinowski’s accuracy and poise in the pocket that finally broke the game open.
HB Myles Allen—17 carries, 113 yards, 2 touchdowns
Allen’s first touchdown had to be seen to be believed; he turned an almost certain two-yard loss into an absolute beauty of a score.
DE Colin Woods—3 tackles, 1 fumble recovery, 1 touchdown
Though fellow defender Barrett knocked the ball out, it was Woods’ scoop and run that got the YellowJackets on the board.
DT Matt Mender—8 tackles, 0.5 sacks
Mender made sure that Gallaudet’s revolving door of running backs and quarterbacks all had equally miserable days. It seemed like he was in on every tackle.
Bernstein is a member of
the class of 2018.