Schwern breaks, ties rushing records in Colby's rivalry win over Bowdoin

WATERVILLE, Maine -- Junior running back Jake Schwern had the greatest rushing performance in the history of the Colby College football program after running for 262 yards and four touchdowns in a 31-20 win over rival Bowdoin College on Saturday at Whittier Field.

Schwern broke or tied three school records in the game. The 262 yards on 30 carries broke the old single-game record of 247 yards set by Brian Cooley '90 in the 1989 season against Bowdoin. Schwern tied school records for most touchdowns scored in a game and most points scored in a game (24) with Dave Cox (1962, Norwich), Peter Gorniewicz (1971, Hobart), Mike Marra (1984, Middlebury), and Lawaun Curry (1996, Bowdoin). 
Game highlights
* After falling behind 20-10 with 9:59 left in the third quarter, Schwern had scoring runs of 34, 58, and 1 yard in the final 20:48 of the contest. 
* Colby's defense held the Polar Bears (0-9 overall) to just three points in the second half. The Mules had two interceptions, one fumble recovery, and three sacks in the game.
* After a 23-yard field goal by Bowdoin's Andrew Sisti with 9:59 left in the third quarter, the Mules scored 21 unanswered points. Schwern made it 20-17 on a 34-yard scoring run with 5:48 left in the third quarter. He went off tackle and had some wide open running room before eluding a tackle around the 5-yard line.
* The first play of the final quarter could not have gone better for the Mules (1-8). Schwern again went off tackle and had wide open running room up the middle of the field on his 58-yard scoring run for a 24-20 Colby lead.
* After a 24-yard punt by the Polar Bears, Colby took over on the Bowdoin 47-yard line. Mule quarterback Jack O'Brien had a 43-yard run on a play where he looked like he might get about five yards. However, he was able to break outside to his right and get all the way to the Polar Bear 3-yard line. 
* On third down at the 1-yard line, Schwern powered in from the right side for the final points of the game with 10:23 to go. Colby kicker John Baron (pictured right) booted his fourth extra point of the contest to make it 31-20. Schwern averaged 9.2 yards per rush in the game.
* Bowdoin took a 17-10 lead at halftime and had the better of play in the opening 30 minutes. The Polar Bears scored first on a 34-yard scoring pass from Noah Nelson to Nick Vallas with 6:36 left in the first quarter.
* The Mules made it 7-3 when Baron booted a 38-yard field goal with 4:23 left in the first quarter. Schwern had a 37-yard run on the drive to get the Mules in field goal range. With the kick, Baron tied a school record with 20 career made field goals with John Goss, who played from 2002 to 2005.
* Bowdoin went 16 plays and 71 yards while knocking 8:29 off the clock, but only settled for a 20-yard field goal by Andrew Sisti. The Polar Bears had second down at the 3-yard line, but the Mules received big tackles from Chase Goode and Nick Strand to keep Bowdoin out of the end zone.
* Colby had a huge special teams play by Jibri Woods (pictured left) to give his team some momentum. He had a 44-yard kickoff return to the Bowdoin 46-yard line. After a 13-yard completion from Jack O'Brien to Christian Sparacio on first down, Schwern went 33 yards for his first touchdown of the game to knot the game at 10-10.
* The Polar Bears did bounce back to take a 17-10 lead at halftime. Bowdoin went 68 yards on 10 plays, culminating in a 14-yard scoring pass from Nelson to Bryan Porter with just 57 seconds left in the second quarter.
By the numbers
* Colby senior defensive end Craig Strand had a team-high 10 tackles, including three tackles for loss (two sacks). He also forced a fumble that teammate Harrison Vedrani recovered.
* Colby defensive back Will Caffey added two interceptions, including his second with 3:19 left to clinch the victory. 
* Colby won for the 50th time over Bowdoin, but the Polar Bears still lead by a 70-50-9 count in the series. The 129th meeting between the two teams is the third-longest rivalry in Division III football behind Williams/Amherst (131) and Kalamazoo/Albion (130).
* O'Brien only had 11 passes in the game with Colby running the ball so well. Nelson threw 45 passes for the Polar Bears because of their lack of running game. Bowdoin running backs accounted for just 22 yards on 12 carries.
* The Mules now have a two-game winning streak over the Polar Bears. The home team had won the last six games. Colby took a 32-16 win last year at Harold Alfond Stadium.
* After some tough road losses to the Polar Bears the past eight years, Colby earned its first win at Whittier Field since 2005.