Mammoths Fall to Williams, 31-9, in 134th Rivalry Showdown

Mammoths Fall to Williams, 31-9, in 134th Rivalry Showdown

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. – The 2019 Amherst College football season came to a close on Saturday afternoon at Farley-Lamb Field with a 31-9 defeat to Williams College in the 134th playing of the Biggest Little Game in America.

Amherst finishes their season with a record of 4-5, while the Ephs improve to 7-2, and now are 73-56-5 all-time against Amherst after earning just their second win in the series in the last nine years.

Williams led from wire to wire, getting on the scoreboard first with a defensive touchdown in the opening minutes and jumping out to a 17-0 advantage before the Mammoths got on the board with a 31-yard field goal from Henry Atkeson '20.

The Mammoths cut the deficit to eight points before halftime with a touchdown pass from Ollie Eberth '20 to James O'Regan '20, the eighth time the two seniors have hooked up in the end zone.

Eberth completed 12 passes for 137 yards, one touchdown, and an interception on the opening possession of the game, which was returned by Williams senior Ben Anthony 32-yards for a touchdown to put the hosts up 7-0 with less than a minute and a half gone.

Amherst was held to 1-11 on third downs and was outgained 470 yards to 196. Williams had the overwhelming advantage on the ground, rushing for 345 yards while holding Amherst's rushing attack to just 59 yards, led by 20 yards on the ground from Eberth and 15 from Brandon Huff '22. 

With their ability to run the ball effectively, the Ephs also held the ball for sixteen minutes more than the Mammoths.

O'Regan caught four passes for 55 yards and a score, while Luke Mallette '20 was the Mammoth's leading receiver, hauling in six catches for 69 yards.

First year Clay Zachery led all players with 10 total tackles, while Joe Kelly '21 and Matt Albino '21 combined on the only sack of the afternoon for the Amherst defensive unit.

Eph's first year running back Joel Nicholas rushed for 211 yards and three touchdowns for Williams, who also leaned on their NESCAC-leading defense, which came into the game allowing just 11.9 points per game.

On a 3rd and long on Amherst's opening possession, Williams first-year safety Drew Michalek broke up an Eberth pass and batted the ball into the air. It eventually fell into the arms of Anthony, who galloped to the pylon for the opening score.

Nicholas got his first score of the game, a six-yard scamper nearly untouched with 9:27 to play in the first quarter, and Min Kyu Park, who was 4-4 on extra point attempts, kicked a 21-yard field goal to put the Ephs up 17-0 with 12:11 to play in the half.

A pass interference call kept the next Mammoth drive alive in the red zone, leading to a 3-yard touchdown pass from Eberth, his 15th touchdown pass of the year. Despite a missed extra point, Amherst was within one possession at the half, 17-9. 

Williams emphasized the run even more in the second half, keeping Amherst off the field and the scoreboard and controlling the clock. On a fourth and inches early in the third quarter, the Ephs gave the ball to Nicholas, who bounced outside a blitz for a 53-yard score. On the next play, Nicholas finished the job with a ten-yard touchdown run.

With 2:15 left in the fourth, Nicholas added an insurance score from 23 yards out, capping a 14 play, 77-yard drive and putting himself over 200 yards on the day.