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Defensive plays not enough to keep streak vs. Hamilton going





K. McAllister


CLINTON, N.Y. -- Lance Wilson came off the bench to throw two touchdown passes late in the fourth quarter as Hamilton College rallied for a 24-14 win against visiting Bates College in a NESCAC football game played at Steuben Field on Saturday. The Continentals' (2-6) win is their first since 2003 against the Bobcats (1-7), limiting Bates' win streak against Hamilton to five games.

Bates, Bowdoin and Colby share the CBB title for the first time since 1995, as Bowdoin downed Colby on Saturday. Bates defeated Bowdoin last week and lost at Colby the week before. Bates last won the CBB football title in 2002.

Wilson relieved Dan Peters, who had an interception returned to Hamilton's 1-yard line, and had a fumble brought back 59 yards for a Bobcats touchdown. Wilson finished 16-for-28 for 155 yards, and led the Continentals with 18 rushing yards. Ben Tomaszewski recorded five receptions for a game-high 108 yards, including a 67-yard catch-and-run for a score in the first quarter. Max Foster added seven receptions for 75 yards. Foster ended his career in fourth place on the team's all-time list with 1,309 receiving yards to go with 104 catches.

Hamilton's defense limited Bates to 58 yards of offense and eight first downs. The Bobcats were 3-for-17 on third down and 0-for-3 on fourth down conversions. Burke St. John was credited with three of the Continentals' nine sacks and led the team with nine tackles. Jim Forrey added 2.5 sacks and Will Finan returned an interception 33 yards in the third quarter.

Bates' Patrick George (Gloucester, Mass.) led all rushers with 42 yards and scored on a 1-yard plunge. First-year quarterback Trevor Smith (Malvern, Pa.) was 10-for-24 for 55 yards passing in his third start. Junior Gavin Segall-Abrams (Greensboro, N.C.) averaged 43.3 yards on 11 punts, including a long of 57 yards. Sophomore Kevin Helm (Norwell, Mass.) paced a defense that allowed just 33 rushing yards with 11 tackles and an interception. Junior Myles Walker (Needham, Mass.) added nine stops, including one of the team's four sacks. Sophomore Cam Evans (Norwell, Mass.) picked off two passes and broke up four, and senior Kyle McAllister (Exeter, N.H.) had an 18-yard punt return to go with 90 yards on five kickoff returns.

With Hamilton trailing 14-10 and 9 minutes, 17 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, Wilson led the Continentals on a 12-play drive that ended with a 9-yard touchdown pass to Ryan Cray on the left sideline. Wilson completed 7 of 10 passes on the drive and ran for 14 yards.

The Bobcats, now trailing 17-14, threw three straight incomplete passes on the next drive and gave the ball back to Hamilton at the Continentals' 44 with 4:02 left. Wilson completed a 31-yard pass to Foster as Foster fell out-of-bounds at the Bates 25. On fourth-and-3 at the 18, Wilson dropped back and lobbed a pass to McCullough Shriver, who caught the ball near the 15-yard line. Shriver eluded several defenders and sprinted into the end zone for the game-clinching touchdown with 1:46 remaining.

The Bobcats scored first, following Helm's 32-yard interception return, which brought Bates to the Hamilton 1. George ran it in from there on the next play, and Segall-Abrams' extra point made it 7-0 with 4:22 left in the first quarter.

The Continentals needed just two plays to tie the score. On second-and-9 from his own 33, Peters found the 6-foot-3 Tomaszewski with a Hail Mary-type pass at the Bates 25. Tomaszewski shrugged off a defender and rumbled the rest of the way into the end zone.

Hamilton took the lead on the first play of the second quarter thanks to a mistake by the Bobcats' special teams late in the first. Segall-Abrams dropped a high snap as Bates was trying to punt from its own 33, and he was tackled at the 16 by St. John. George Taylor ended up kicking a 30-yard field goal to make the score 10-7. The field goal was the first made by Taylor this season.

The Bobcats regained the lead on another big defensive play later in the second. The Continentals had driven to the Bates 27 and faced a second-and-14. Peters dropped back and was hit square in the chest by first-year cornerback Kyle Starr (Concord, N.H.) at the 36. The ball popped out and sophomore Tyler Kuehl (Plymouth, N.H.) picked it up at the 41 and went the other way. Kuehl wasn't touched until he reached the end zone after a 59-yard return that made the score 13-10 with 5:40 left in the half. Segall-Abrams added the extra point, and neither team scored again until the fourth quarter.

It was the final game for Bobcat seniors Tom Beaton (West Newbury, Mass.), Tom Berry (Evanston, Ill.), Alex Gentilli (Westwood, Mass.), Matt Gregg (Milton, Mass.), Bill Jennings (Marshfield, Mass.), Mark Liu (Lexington, Mass.), Roy Lockhart (Needham, Mass.), Kyle McAllister (Exeter, N.H.), Rich McNeil (Lawrence, Mass.), Justin Medeiros (South Yarmouth, Mass.), Dave Myerson (Dover, Mass.), Matt Sherburne (Windham, Maine), Judd Smith (Milton, Mass.), MacEgan Starrett (Chagrin Falls, Ohio) and Sean Wirth (Barrington, R.I.).

STATS: Hamilton 24, Bates 14