Oct. 30, 2004
In their final home game of the 2004 season, the Endicott College Gull's defeated the Bison of Nichols College, 17-3. Both teams entered with identical records (4-4, 3-1 NEFC Boyd) but Endicott came out on top on the cold drizzly afternoon, advancing their record to 5-4 overall, already an improvement over last season's 4-5 record.
Nichols took the lead early in the first quarter when punter Adam Labbe (Litchfield, ME/ Oak Hills) was taken down in the backfield after receiving a bad snap. This gave Nichols excellent field position as kicker Matt Cestone (Milbury, MA/ Algonquin) put the Bison on the board with a 33-yard field goal.
This was as far as Nichols would advance, as Endicott took control for the remainder of the game, holding Nichols to only 4 first downs overall. The stifling Endicott defense was anchored by Beverly's own Jay Munroe (Beverly, MA/ Beverly) with 9 and a half total tackles. Orlando Johnson (Newport, RI/ Rogers), 6 total tackles, and TJ Sawyer (South Burlington, VT/ South Burlington) both recorded interceptions.
Endicott kicker Adam Maher (Athol, MA/ Athol) answered Cestone's kick with a 19-yard field goal of his own to tie the game at 3-3. In the second quarter with 8:08 on the clock and the Gulls at 4th and 1, Endicott used their final time out of the half and elected to go for the conversion. Freshman quarterback Vinny Orlando's (Manchester, MA/ Manchester-Essex) 2-yard touchdown pass to Kevin Samaha (Concord, NH/ Concord) put the Gulls ahead 10-3.
The Gulls struck again at 13:20 in the 4th quarter when Orlando found Ryan McLean (Mansfield, MA/ Mansfield) wide open in the end zone to seal the victory. Maher added the extra point to give EC the 17-3 lead.
The Bison collected 4 sacks, but were unable to stop Orlando, who completed 9 of 18 passes for a total of 110 yards. McLean had a breakout game with 5 receptions, accounting for 93 of Orlando's 110 passing yards. Gerard Festa led the Gull's running game with a total of 166 rushing yards.
Nichols (4-5, 3-2 NEFC Boyd) wraps up their season next week at home versus WNEC. Endicott (5-4, 4-1 NEFC Boyd) travels to MIT next week for their final game of the season.