Middlebury Scores 34 Unanswered in Win Over Colby

Conrado Banky caught nine passes for 136 yards with two touchdowns in the win.
Conrado Banky caught nine passes for 136 yards with two touchdowns in the win.

Middlebury outgained Colby 559-179, as the Panthers won for the seventh-straight time over the Mules (0-3), this time a 37-6 decision on Youngman Field at Alumni Stadium. Middlebury (3-0), who is currently ranked seventh in New England, will travel to Amherst for a 2:00 p.m. game next Saturday, while Colby visits Wesleyan.

Middlebury took a 3-0 lead at the 7:53 mark of the first quarter when Carter Massengill converted from 27 yards out. A 39-yard connection from Jared Lebowitz to Maxwell Rye on the opening play of the drive got things going.

Two drives later, Colby took advantage of a fumble, driving just 34 yards on three plays for a 6-3 lead after Middlebury's Robert Wood blocked the extra point. The scoring play came when Jack O'Brien tossed a 21-yard touchdown pass to Jake Schwern.

The Mules drove to the Middlebury nine on their next drive, but a 26-yard field goal attempt from John Baron was blocked by Matthew Daniel, keeping it a 6-3 game at the 13:57 mark of the second quarter.

The Panthers took the lead for good with 8:10 remaining in the second quarter when Lebowitz tossed a quick shovel pass to Conrado Banky in the end zone for a five-yard touchdown.

Leading 10-6, Middlebury added to the advantage on its ensuing possession, driving 66 yards on nine plays. Lebowitz and Banky hooked up for the second time in the quarter, this one from 18 yards out over the middle for the touchdown. The scoring reception was the 17th of his career for Banky, tying Beau Coash '81 for third on the school's all-time list.

Schwern returned a kick 46 yards to start the second half, but the drive stalled at the Middlebury 17 when Kevin Hopsicker broke up a pass on a fourth-and-five play.

Middlebury took a 24-6 lead with 1:07 remaining in the third when Tanner Contois hauled in an 18-yard touchdown pass from Lebowitz. The scoring strike was the 40th of his career for Lebowitz, moving him into fourth all-time at Middlebury.

Jimmy Martinez gave his team a comfortable 31-6 cushion at the 11:49 mark of the third quarter, cutting up the middle before racing down the left sideline for a 61-yard punt return for a touchdown. The return for a touchdown was the second of the season for Martinez, who returned a kickoff 96 yards into the end zone against Wesleyan two weeks ago.

Middlebury made it a 37-6 final with 4:33 remaining when Charlie Ferguson scored on a 25-yard touchdown run, carrying a Colby defender into the end zone.

Lebowitz finished the day 28-52 for 389 yards with three touchdown passes. Banky led all receivers with nine catches for 136 yards and two scores, while Aidan Power caught five passes for 68 yards. Ferguson (59 yards, TD) and Peter Scibilia (57 yards) paced the ground game. Alex Norton finished the game with three sacks for the Panthers, while Bobby Ritter and Wesley Becton each made six tackles.

O'Brien connected on 14-29 attempts, throwing for 91 yards with a touchdown for the Mules. Schwern led the rushers with 46 yards, while Bernie Sander paced the receivers with three catches for 39 yards. Bryan McAdams was one of three Mules with six tackles today, all of his were solo.