ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute scored five touchdowns offensively and one defensively in a 51-13 football victory over the University of Rochester at Edwin Fauver Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
The Engineers also got three field goals from Christian Kapp in running up their highest point total ever against the Yellowjackets. This was the 75th meeting between RPI and Rochester, dating back to October 13, 1906. RPI has won five of the last seven meetings against the Yellowjackets.
RPI improved to 3-2 overall, 1-1 in the Liberty League. Rochester is 1-3 overall, 0-2 in the Liberty League.
Junior runningn back Mike Tivinis led RPI with 124 rushing yards and two touchdowns. He scored on an eight-yard run to start the third quarter (boosting the RPI lead to 27-6), then added an 11-yard TD run with 2:53 left in the third (41-13).
Sophomore Nick Cella rushed 18 times for 111 yards and one TD. RPI’s other rushing touchdown came from Johnny Ramsdell, a two-yarder in the first period to open the scoring. Eleven men carried the ball for positive yardage for RPI. Ethan Wells gained 99 yards on 14 carries.
Quarterback Ed Trimpert completed five of eight passes for 63 yards and one TD, a 34-yard strike to John Costello on the final play of the first half.
The defensive touchdown was scored by Anthony Gallo. He intercepted Josh Brown’s pass in the right flat and returned it 28 yards for a TD to complete the scoring with just under five minutes remaining.
Kapp, who was perfect on all six of his PATs, made field goals of 30 yards twice (both in the second quarter) and added a 23-yarder early in the final quarter.
The Rochester touchdowns were scored by Nick Perpignan and Luke Szumzki. Perpignan caught a five-yard pass from Dan Bronson late in the second quarter to get the Yellowjackets on the scoreboard (13-6). Early in the third quarter, Bronson found Harry Calmar behind the defense for a 41-yard gain to the 26. RPI’s D.J. Stefonsky jarred the ball loose. It was scooped up by Szumski at the 26 and he raced into the end zone for a touchdown. Jacob Wheeler added the PAT.
Bronson completed 11 of 24 passes for 191 yards and the two scores. He was sacked four times – twice by Thomas Bennett, once each by Oliver Kaija and John Hartment. Bronson ran for 63 yards on 15 carries. The Yellowjackets totaled 281 yards in offense – 189 passing, 92 rushing.
The touchdown pass from Trimpert to Costello may well have been the key play of the entire game. Rochester, which trailed 13-0, climbed back into it with 35 seconds left in the second quarter. Bronson kept the drive alive with a 46-yard burst up the middle on 3rd-and-13. Three plays later, he threw a pass to Perpignan in the left flat and he carried it in for a touchdown. RPI blocked the PAT, leaving Rochester down, 13-6.
The ensuing kickoff was returned by Jack Hoggard to the RPI 35. Tivinis rushed twice, totaling 29 yards, to put the ball on the Rochester 34 with seven seconds left. Trimpert rolled to his left to escape pressure, waited, then found Costello crossing right to left in the end zone and hit him with the scoring pass as the horn sounded. Kapp’s PAT put RPI ahead, 20-6, heading into the locker room.
Tivinis’ first touchdown completed a seven-play, 65-yard scoring drive to open the third quarter. Rochester answered with the Bronson-to-Calmar, fumble, Szumski recovery and return play, cutting the margin to 27-13.
After an exchange of punts on three-and-outs, RPI drove 72 yards in seven plays (all on the ground), and scored on Cella’s four-yard TD with 4:52 left in the third. Rochester gambled with a fake punt on its possession, but the defense held and the Engineers took over at the UR 27. RPI converted on the short field, going 27 yards in three plays to build a 41-13 lead on Tivinis’ second TD of the day, this one from 11 yards out, with less than three minutes left in the third.