NCAC Weekly Release (10-15-12) - Football
Two North Coast football squads remain unbeaten at the top of the league standings, including Ohio Wesleyan (4-0, 6-0) and Allegheny (3-0, 4-2), while the trio of Kenyon (2-1, 3-3), Wabash (2-1, 5-1) and Wittenberg (2-1, 5-1) remain one game back in the loss column. Three conference matchups are on the slate this Saturday, highlighted by Allegheny hosting Wittenberg in Meadville at 1:00 p.m.
ALLEGHENY senior Colin Hartford (Fox Chapel, PA/Fox Chapel) intercepted a potential game-tying two-point conversion with 37 seconds left in regulation as the Gators held on to defeat DePauw, 22-20. The win marks the first time Allegheny has opened the conference schedule with three straight wins since the 2003 season, which was also the Gators’ last appearance in the NCAA Division III Championship Tournament. In addition, senior Bill Devlin (Natrona Hts., PA/Highlands) paced an outstanding defensive performance with a game-best and career-high 15 tackles (11 solo, 4 asst.), including 4.5 tackles-for-loss.
DENISON fell to .500 in league play at 2-2 after falling to Oberlin, 30-6, on Saturday. DU quarterback Max Paulus (Massillon, OH/Jackson) completed 22-of-37 pass attempts for 226 yards, while Lane Hartfield (Newark, OH/Newark Catholic) paced the defense with eight tackles, including 3.5 tackles-for-loss.
DEPAUW freshman quarterback Justin Murray (Jonesboro, GA/Fayette County) completed 15-of-22 pass attempts in the second half and the defense surrendered just 45 yards, but the Tigers’ fourth-quarter comeback bid fell short as Allegheny came away with a 22-20 league victory. Senior linebacker Jack Quinn (Wheaton, IL/North) led the Tigers on defense with 10 tackles (5 solo, 5 asst..), 1.5 tackles-for-loss, 1.0 sack and one forced fumble.
HIRAM suffered a 45-14 setback against Wooster in NCAC action on Saturday evening. The Terriers will host Chicago in a non-conference contest on Saturday at 1:00 p.m.
KENYON was plagued by turnovers on Saturday as five Lords turnovers led to 20 Ohio Wesleyan points to help the Battling Bishops post a 33-14 victory. KC senior wide receiver Carlo Gagliardo (Greensboro, NC/Northwest Guilford) led all receivers in the game with 10 catches for 127 yards and one touchdown, while freshman Andrew Allen (Frisco, TX/Frisco Liberty) led the defense with seven tackles (4 solo, 3 asst.), 1.0 sack and one forced fumble.
OBERLIN snapped a four-game skid by defeating NCAC-foe Denison, 30-6, on Saturday at home. Senior wide receiver Robin Witjes (Howell, MI/Howell) had a career day after hauling in 12 catches for 222 yards and two scores. His first score of the day covered 89-yards, marking the longest offensive play from scrimmage in school history, while his 222 yards trails only Ricky Valenzuela who racked up 239 yards in a game in 2001. Defensively, the Yeomen were led by junior Jake Danko (Vermillion, OH/Firelands) who also had a career day with career-highs in tackles (9), sacks (4.0) and tackles-for-loss (5.0).
OHIO WESLEYAN continued its impressive season by securing a 33-14 triumph over Kenyon to improve to 4-0 in league play and 6-0 overall for the first time since 2001. Sophomore kicker Miles MacKenzie (Denver, CO/East) finished the game with four field goals, matching the second-highest single-game figure in school history, while his 15 points scored by kicking were also the second-highest single-game effort in program history. His 15 points also moved his season total to 63, breaking the OWU single-season record of 59 set by Pete Billington in 1968. The OWU defense was led by junior linebacker Justin Segal (West Harrison, NY/Harrison) who collected a team-high 14 tackles (4 solo, 10 asst.), including 1.0 sack and one forced fumble.
WABASH, which moved up two spots to No. 13 on the D3football.com Top 25, cruised to a 34-14 non-conference triumph over Washington (MO) on Saturday in St. Louis. Prior to leaving the game with an injury, senior quarterback Chase Belton (Dayton, OH/Northmont) completed 6-of-8 pass attempts for 67 yards and one score to go along with six rushing attempts for 166 yards and touchdown scampers of 56- and 69-yards.The Wabash defensive unit, which limited Washington to just 84 rushing yards, was led by junior Nate Scola (Gold Canyon, AZ/Apache Junction) who racked up nine tackles (6 solo, 3 asst.) and 3.0 tackles-for-loss.
WITTENBERG got back in the win column with a convincing 41-17 victory over Chicago on Saturday in Springfield. Although junior quarterback Reed Florence (South Charleston, OH/South Charleston) completed 22-of-31 pass attempts for a season-high 347 yards and four touchdowns, it was junior wide receiver Desi Kirkman (Lima, OH/Central Catholic) who received postgame coverage from the national media. On Wittenberg’s second score of the contest, Kirkman finished off a 19-yard score by flipping over a Chicago defender into the endzone, and as a result, the highlight reel from the play landed at No. 2 on ESPN’s SportsCenter Top 10 Plays.
WOOSTER picked up its first league victory of the season on Saturday evening with a 45-14 win over Hiram. Junior quarterback Richard Barnes (Painesville, OH/Harvey) totaled 223 yards of offense (185 passing, 38 rushing) and four touchdowns (3 passing, 1 rushing), while junior Brendon Taylor (Aliquippa, PA/Hopewell) totaled six tackles (5 solo, 1 asst.), including 2.0 tackles-for-loss.