NEW YORK, N.Y.—Ithaca College claimed the Cortaca Jug for the fourth time in five years after doubling up the SUNY Cortland Red Dragons by a score of 34-17 on Nov. 12. The win gave the Bombers the 10th and final win they needed to finish off a perfect regular season before the NCAA Div. III playoffs begin next week.
It is the program’s first undefeated regular season since 1986, according to Ithaca College Athletics, and its first Liberty League championship ever.
The 63rd Cortaca Jug game, held in Yankee Stadium in New York City this year in front of more than 40,000 fans, featured a close battle between the two rivals who both entered the game ranked and unbeaten until Ithaca College scored two consecutive touchdowns by Julien Deumaga and Jake Williams in the fourth quarter to seal the game.
The Bombers were led by Quarterback A.J. Wingfield, a senior, who went 18-20 for 209 yards and 3 touchdowns. He was helped on offense by Williams, a junior, who gained 132 yards from scrimmage and scored two touchdowns.
Ithaca College, which now leads the Cortaca Jug series 38-25, built a 20-7 lead in the third quarter before Cortland’s Jaden Alfanostjohn rushed for a touchdown and the Red Dragons added a field goal to draw to 20-17 with 13 minutes left.
But IC closed the door fairly quickly, as Deumaga hauled in a 40-yard pass from Wingfield and Williams scored on a 43-yard run three minutes later. IC outgained Cortland, 336-303 yards overall.
The win sets up the Bombers to host a home playoff game this Saturday, Nov. 20, facing UMass-Dartmouth at Butterfield Stadium in Ithaca. Cortland, meanwhile, will travel to play Randolph-Macon in Ashland, Virginia.
Correction: This article originally referred to the Liberty League as the Patriot League.