The Ursinus College football team has started its season off with a bang. With a strong defensive performance, the Bears won their home opener versus Bethany College (W.V.) with a final score of 22-10, and then their first conference game against Gettysburg, 48-10.
The Bears tallied nine sacks against Bethany, which matches the single-game program record that was set in 2016 and made it a historic defensive performance.
Junior defensive lineman Darren Sipf played an important role in the Ursinus defense with two sacks and four tackles. “The whole team was excited to get that first week win and start off the season 1-0, but we know there are things we could work on still so we know we gotta keep working,” said Sipf.
Senior defensive back Jack Spingler added 1.5 sacks to the Bears’ defense. “I believe we have a strong supportive and motivated group. [We] know what we have to do to get better and we were excited to pull out our 1st win of the season.”
Senior running back Stacey Gardner, who scored the Bears’ first touchdown of the game in his first game after a position change, believes “the work that we have put in to become a well-oiled machine began with the start of our offseason training last season and everyone has showed the will and desire to carry it through over the summer and hopefully through the rest of the season.”
The Bears believe their success was due to hard work and trusting their teammates. Spingler believes, “Trust overall lead to the success we had against Bethany. Trusting each other and having relentless effort won us the football game.” Sipf agrees: “What lead to [our] success [versus] Bethany would have to be just the hard work that started after last season.”
Knowing that conference play was approaching, Gardner said, “Our mindset heading into Gettysburg is to make a statement to the rest of the conference that we are real contenders to bring a Centennial Conference Championship back to Collegeville.”
However, the Bears prepared for the Gettysburg Bullets just as they did for any game. “Our mindset for week two is no different than any other week. Every week is one roadblock in our way to be conference champions as coach would say, and we take that to heart. This is just another team trying to take something away from us and we don’t let that happen,” Sipf said. Spingler agrees: “We focus on playing Ursinus football and do it to the best of our ability.”
Spingler admitted that the team was eager for the conference matchup: “Heading into Gettysburg we’re excited and want to come out fast and focus on winning each play one by one.”
The Bears rolled over the Bullets, establishing a two-game winning streak and 1-0 CC record. Ursinus returns to Patterson field Saturday, 9/21 for a homecoming matchup vs. Juniata.