DANBURY, CT - Senior running back Kyle McKinnon (New London, CT) scored four touchdowns including the game-winning one-yard run and two-point conversion as the Western Connecticut State University football team came from behind to defeat Bridgewater State University, 50-48 in four overtimes on Homecoming Night at the Westside Athletic Complex on Saturday night.
MicKinnon scored the game's first touchdown, also a one-yard run, and sandwiched a pair of eight-yard TD rushes on a night when the Colonials came back from a 14-point deficit in the fourth quarter and improved to 7-0 on the season, the longest win streak dating back to 1999 when they finished the regular season a perfect 10-0. He finished with 72 yards on 20 carries and accounted for eight total points with a pair of two-point conversions in extra time.
Senior quarterback David James (Stamford, CT) completed 24-of-35 passes for 402 yards and three touchdowns to lead WestConn's arial attack. He threw scores of 57 yards to Austin Calmita (North Branford, CT), 33 yards to Lucas DeSouza (Bridgeport, CT) and 30 yards to Will Daniels (Bethel, CT).
Bridgewater State, now 5-3 overall and 4-2 in the Massachusetts State College Athletic Conference, enjoyed a 14-point advantage, 28-14, after Stefano D'Emilia (Bridgewater, MA) connected with Travis Bassett (Littleton, MA) from 70 yards out with 8:03 remaining in the third quarter. It was the second straight TD pass to Bassett as the combination closed out the first half with a seven-yard score and a seven point lead heading into intermission, 21-14.
D'Emilia completed 24-of-41 passes for 312 yards and four TDs. He was intercepted twice.
Bassett was one of two Bears' receivers with over 100 yards, yanking down eight catches for 117 yards.
Jack Lavanchy (Walpole, MA) hauled in 12 catches for 135 yards and a 19-yard TD for Bridgewater's first score, four seconds into the second quarter.
James' catch then carry by DeSouza trimmed the WestConn deficit to 28-21 with 3:53 elapsed in the final stanza.
McKinnon then closed out a 10-play, 80-yard drive with his second eight-yard TD jaunt with 2:00 remaining in regulation to knot the game at, 28-28.
With 49 seconds remaining in the final period, James was picked off by Samuel Boamah (Cherry Valley, MA) and the Bears took over on the Colonials' 40 yard line.
With three ticks left on the clock, D'Emilia's pass in the endzone sailed far over the head of Jack Lavanchy, but the Colonials defense was whistled for holding to set up a 45-yard field-goal attempt by Lavanchy. His attempted landed short of the uprights and overtime commenced.
Daniels' catch and bully into the endzone began the overtime session. Jordan D'Onofrio's (Orange, CT) extra-point attempt was blocked by Matt Willis (Raynham, MA), but that was only the beginning of the thrill-fest.
Junior Nick Santavicca (Yorktown Heights, NY) scored from seven yards out and Jacob Crear's would-be game-winning extra point was blocked by Vinnie Scancarello (Monroe, NY).
Sense a theme here?
Both teams' quarterback were intercepted in their second overtime tries.
McKinnon scored from eight yards out in the second overtime and added the two-point conversion.
Santavicca matched with an eight-yard run of his own, but he caught the two-point conversion attempt by D'Emilia. Santavicca finished with a game-high 183 yards on 42 carries and three scores. He averaged 4.4 yards per carry with a long of 18 yards.
In the fourth overtime, Bassett caught a seven-yard pass from D'Emilia, but the junior signal-callers points-after pass attempt failed.
McKinnon then supplied the final two runs of the game, the latter a two-point conversion taken directly from center.
Jaren Alves (East Providence, RI) and Rhondell Teesdale (Dorchester, MA) each registered eight tackles for the Bears.
WestConn hits the road for its final regular-season road game next Saturday to Fitchburg State University. Game time against the Falcons is set for 2 pm.