Union dominates Rochester 35-14

Freshman Irabor runs for 175 yards and two touchdowns as Dutchmen improve to 6-2
Union freshman running back Ike Irabor runs the ball against Rochester Saturday afternoon. He had 175 yards and two touchdowns.
Union freshman running back Ike Irabor runs the ball against Rochester Saturday afternoon. He had 175 yards and two touchdowns.

SCHENECTADY — With blustery winds shifting direction and clouds working their way across the gray sky, at least one person at Frank Bailey Field found some daylight.

Running back Ike Irabor patiently searched for a gap in his line, then burst through for a 43-yard touchdown early in the third quarter that gave the Union football team a 28-0 lead over Rochester Saturday.

The Dutchmen polished off a 35-14 victory that never seemed that close, while celebrating Senior Day.

But it was younger players who carried the game, as the freshman Irabor ran the ball 18 times for 175 yards and two touchdowns, and sophomore Travis Demby finished with 77 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries.

Another freshman, the promising 6-foot-3 Andre Ross Jr., caught a 5-yard touchdown pass from Will Bellamy in the back of the end zone for Union’s first score 3:20 into the game.

But the fierce wind forced head coach Jeff Berhman’s hand, and since the running game was working so well anyway, the Dutchmen leaned on that part of their offense to the tune of 299 yards.

“We didn’t really throw the ball down the field based on some weather, and knowing that the run game was working,” Behrman said. “The plan didn’t have that on there, but we had a weekend up there in St. Lawrence a couple weeks ago where it was windy, so we kind of learned.”

Union improved to 2-2 in the Liberty League and 6-2 overall, and the Yellowjackets fell to 0-5 and 1-8.

While Union didn’t try to go too deep in the passing game, Bellamy still finished 13-for-14 for 83 yards, including a 5-yard TD to senior Packy Brown of Burnt Hills to make it 35-0 at 5:43 of the third quarter.

By then, Irabor was done for the day.

On his long TD run, he went off right tackle and shot through the second level of the defense once he was clear of the line of scrimmage.

“I didn’t see a hole at first,” Irabor said. “I was waiting, looking for it and when I saw it, I just burst through and kept running until I got to the end zone.”

“He’s only going to get better,” Behrman said. “He needs time in the weight room, which all the freshmen need. But he had a great game, and Travis Demby, who’s only a sophomore, had a great game, and I really like how our ‘O’ line and our tight ends performed today. And our receivers did a great job blocking on the perimeter.”

Rochester 0 0 0 14 — 14

Union 14 7 14 0 — 35

First quarter

U — Ross 2 pass from Bellamy (Rodriguez kick), 11:40.

U — Demby 9 run (Rodriguez kick), 1:57.

Second quarter

U — Irabor 9 run (Rodriguez kick), 5:04.

Third quarter

U — Irabor 43 run (Rodriguez kick), 9:24.

U — P. Brown 5 pass from Bellamy (Rodriguez kick), 5:43.

Fourth quarter

R — Josephson 4 pass from Gallagher (Klinger kick), 12:53.

R — Glinski 10 pass from J. Brown (Klinger kick), 1:07.

Reach Gazette Sportswriter Mike MacAdam at 518-395-3146 or [email protected]. Follow on Twitter @Mike_MacAdam.

Categories: College Sports, Sports

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