Football Finishes Fourth in NESCAC, Loses to Tufts


Middlebury’s and Tufts’ linemen face off on the line.

The Middlebury football team fell to the Tufts Jumbos 35-13 this past Saturday, concluding its season with a 5-4 record and a fourth-place finish in the NESCAC conference. Though Middlebury put up a tough fight, Tufts took the game in the third quarter, sealing the Panthers’ fate.

Throughout the first half, both teams were able to come away with a pair of touchdowns. Middlebury set the tone in its first drive of the quarter, plucking away at yardage, until sophomore QB Will Jernigan punched the ball in from the seven-yard line. A high-intensity Panther defense came onto the field in response, looking to deflect a Jumbo touchdown.

Tufts, however, made its way down the field a few minutes later. With 6:12 left in the quarter, the Jumbos connected in the end zone to even out the scoreboard, 7-7. The rest of the quarter went scoreless.

Emo Schiappa ’22 and Nick Leone ’21 prepare for play at the line of scrimmage, hungry to take down the Jumbos’ quarterback.

Two more scores created a thrilling second quarter, starting with a Panther interception by junior Coltrane Marcus. After this turnover, Jernigan was able to hit senior wide receiver Jimmy Martinez with a 28-yard reception. Martinez brought the ball down to the nine-yard line, where Jernigan sealed the touchdown. After a missed extra point attempt, the Panthers were up 13-7.

One more Jumbo score right before halftime, making the score 14-13, altered this Panther momentum.

Jack Meservy ’19 scans the field for a reciever.

Going back onto the field after halftime, Tufts was able to come out guns blazing. Three more touchdowns later, and a clock set to 0:00, both teams’ seasons ended. The 35-13 win placed Tufts third in the conference, while the Panthers ended up fourth.

Overall, the Panther team’s season was highlighted by a big win against Williams, redeeming the last-second loss of the 2017 season. The team also beat a .500 record, placing them in the top half of the conference.