ODAC Football: Washington & Lee beats Ferrum 17-7

FERRUM, Va. – The Washington and Lee University football team earned a 17-7 Old Dominion Athletic Conference win on the road at Ferrum College on Saturday afternoon. 

The Blue and White (5-1, 3-0 ODAC) defense stifled the Panthers (0-6, 0-3) in the second half to set the Generals up for a come-from-behind win on the road. With nearly 30 minutes of possession time, WLU held FC to just 262 yards and one touchdown to spoil the homecoming game.

The Panthers struck first and punched the ball past the goal line thanks to a Generals’ miscue during the opening drive for Washington and Lee. On just the third snap, a fumble recovered by Ferrum put the Panthers in scoring position early. The home team was able to string together a 6-play possession for a 9-yard touchdown run by Joshua Ellerbem, Seth Deaton’s kick was good and put the home team up 7-0. 

The next two WLU opportunities would total just 42 yards of offense and gave the ball back to the Panthers by way of a turnover on downs and a punt. 

Still scoreless, the Generals offense came out with 1:15 on the clock until the break. Ignited by a 67-yard Eli Hildebrandt pass to senior Alex Vaught, W&L marched down the field in the hurry-up offense. With the ball on the FC09, Abdullah Mohamed and Harry Crutcher rushed for positive yardage to move the line of scrimmage to the FC04 with 15 seconds on the clock. 

Ferrum called a timeout to adjust to the Blue and White formation. Out of the break, Hildebrandt kept the ball and scampered  into the endzone. Arturo Ramirez’ kick attempt was good to cap the 4-play, 76-yard drive. The two teams were in lockstep as they went into the locker room at halftime. 

The coin toss flipped in Blue and White’s favor and deferring until the second half enabled the Generals to go on a 14-point swing on the opening drive. Eleven plays, all on the ground, resulted in a one-yard touchdown run for Crutcher. In the process, the offense ate up 8:36 of the game clock. Momentum shifted toward W&L on second down at the W&L47. Hildrebrandt ripped off a 33-yard run, the longest rush of the game on either side of the ball, and set up the second scoring drive. 

With the Generals up 14-7, the two teams dueled it out in the trenches and alternated punts for six consecutive drives. 

On the last punt, Paul Pivorotto pinned the Panthers inside their 10-yard line with a 43-yard boom. A first down offensive holding penalty moved FC back onto the four-yard line. The next three plays advanced the ball 25 yards to the FC39. An incomplete pass on 2-and-4 forced Ferrum quarterback, Joshua Luckett, into a passing situation.

Isaiah Mefford picked off Luckett’s throw at the W&L48. 

The Generals offense went to work and wound the clock down to 2:31 off ten plays. The possession ended in a 40-yard Ramirez field goal to give WLU a 10-point cushion.

As time ticked down, the defense allowed Ferrum to snap the ball 11 times but held FC off the board as time expired.