Williams-Amherst rivalry going on TV
Williams and Amherst have played each other 134 times in football, the fourth longest rivalry in college football. This week, fans of both schools will be able to relive some of the classic games in the history of "The Biggest Little Game in America."
NESN, which has been broadcasting Williams-Amherst games for nearly three decades, will rebroadcast five games in the long history of the rivalry. Most of the rebroadcasts will appear on NESN-Plus, with one of those five being rebroadcast on NESN.
The first broadcasts on NESN-Plus will be at 8 p.m., with a replay the next morning at 5 o'clock.
That game in question is the 48-46 Williams win at Weston Field back in 1997, perhaps the greatest game in the history of the rivalry.
Williams led 24-7 until Amherst scored a touchdown with seven seconds left in the first half. The Lord Jeffs, as they were known then, tallied 17 unanswered points in the third quarter to go up 31-24.
Undaunted, Williams got three unanswered touchdowns, and when Fred Storz scored on a 10-yard run, Williams was up 45-31 midway through the fourth quarter.
Amherst responded with a pair of touchdowns in three minutes to take a 46-45 lead. The second touchdown was a Rich Willard-to-Matt Hall pass for 34 yards. Hall, the holder, threw a pass to Todd Haggerty for the two-point conversion.
The Ephs marched back and Collin Vataha, who kicked the first field goal of his career in the second quarter, booted a 27-yarder with two seconds left to give Williams the win and spoil Amherst's bid for a perfect season.
It will be shown on NESN on June 6 at 3 p.m.
Here is a look at the other four games that will be broadcast.
June 2: Williams 20, Amherst 0 (2007). Williams held Amherst to 146 yards in total offense, while running back Brian Morrissey ran 36 times for 108 yards and a touchdown. It was Williams' sixth straight win.
June 3: Amherst 26, Williams 21 (2009). The Lord Jeffs won at Weston Field for the first time since 1985, and went 8-0. Williams came back in 2010 to beat Amherst 31-16 in Amherst and go on to an 8-0 season.
June 4: Amherst 17, Williams 9 (2014). Amherst wrapped up an 8-0 season against Williams. The Ephs did make it close when Alex Scyocurka scored on a one-yard run with 2:57 left in the game. Williams couldn't get the ball back.
June 5: Williams 31, Amherst 24, OT (2017). In the second-ever overtime game between Williams and Amherst, freshman quarterback Bobby Maimaron's 11-yard touchdown run in overtime won the game for the Ephs. Defensive back Amyhr Barber tackled Amherst wide receiver James O'Regan short of the sticks on third down. Reece Foy's fourth-down pass was incomplete, and Williams ended a six-game losing streak to the Mammoths. Maimaron had 33 rushes for 133 yards and four touchdowns for Williams.
Howard Herman can be reached at email@example.com, at @howardherman on Twitter, or 413-496-6253.
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