Football makes second half push, but falls to Bates 21-19

The Colby football team played a hard-fought game against Bates College this past weekend. Colby, coming off their impressive win over Hamilton, looked to keep the momentum going against one of their biggest rivals. Resilient play by the Mules helped them to a close finish in Lewiston, but ultimately wasn’t enough.

Bates dominated the first half in all facets of the game. A difficult first offensive start Colby provided Bates plenty of opportunity to jump ahead. Bates took full advantage of the stifled Colby offense, taking a 21-3 lead over the course of the first half. John Baron ’18 kicked a 43-yard field goal to put the Mules on the board. Baron’s 43-yard field goal was the longest of his career and certainly helped keep the Mules in the game. Colby needed someone to step up on offense. They turned to quarterback Christian Sparacio ’18 to provide a change.

Sparacio came in and helped ignite Colby’s offense. Sparacio would go 21-30 for 255 yards with two touchdowns in the game.

Late in the third quarter, Sparacio connected with Sebastian Ferrell ’19 for a 26-yard touchdown. After a stop by the defense, the offense drove into Bates territory. John Baron capped that drive with a 36-yard field goal to bring the score to 21-13.  Effective defense by the Mules got the ball back with six minutes left.

Colby started their final drive on its own 20-yard line. Nine plays later, they found the end zone on a score from Sparacio to Ferrell to bring the game to 21-19. Despite coming almost all the way back, Colby failed to complete the comeback with their two-point conversion falling incomplete. The defense, however, was not done and forced a quick three and out to give the offense one more shot at victory. Unfortunately, Bates’ defense finally held up and ended the game after a few offensive plays for the Mules.

Colby’s defense turned the corner after halftime and they received help offensively from the connection between Sparacio and Ferrell. However, the ground game struggled all day. The Mules could not move the ball through their running backs and became one-dimensional as the game wore to a close. Defensively, Ian Dickey ’18 played well at the safety position tallying six tackles and an interception. Justin Lamere ’17 led the Mules in tackles, recording 15 stops on the day. The defensive turnaround is promising for the Mules, who look forward to their final two games. Colby has two difficult games against Tufts and Bowdoin to finish the season. They play at Tufts next weekend before their final home game of the year against Bowdoin to round out the CBB rivalry. Colby has two great opportunities to finish the season strong, and they will surely look to rebound after this week.

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