GREENWOOD, IN - The College of Mount St. Joseph (4-2, 4-1 HCAC) broke open a close football game on Saturday afternoon in the third quarter, scoring three unanswered touchdowns, as they went on to a 44-31 HCAC win over Defiance College (3-4, 3-2 HCAC) on Homecoming weekend.
Defiance held a 14-3 advantage at the end of the first quarter, but the host Lions bounced back in the second frame to even the score at 17-17 at the half.
The Mount dominated the third quarter, outscoring the Yellow Jackets 20-0 to break the game wide open.
Antonio Banks (Middletown, Ohio/H.S.) finished the game with 135 yards rushing on 25 carries, while Leonard Riston (Cincinnati, Ohio/Withrow) hauled in a team-high seven passes for 76 yards. MSJ quarterback Caleb Watkins (Middletown, Ohio/H.S.) was 12-for-26 for 176 yards with three touchdowns and one interception.
The Lions finished with 327 yards of offense, while their defense intercepted two passes and had three sacks.
Darius Gilbert (Hamilton, Ohio/Hamilton) led the defense with eight tackles, including five stops for loss yardage, while forcing a fumble.
Defiance was led by freshman quarterback Alex Larson (Highland, Mich./Milford) in the loss. Larson finished the afternoon 25 of 43 for 268 yards and a touchdown. Freshman Trey White (Indianapolis, Ind./Lawrence Central) hauled in a game-high 10 receptions for 141 yards, including a 76 yard touchdown reception.
Mount St. Joseph will travel to Manchester Saturday, while Defiance will play host to Hanover.
In other action...
Franklin College (4-2, 4-0 HCAC) scored 35 first-quarter points and amassed 602 yards in total offense for a 67-7 victory over Anderson University (0-6, 0-4 HCAC) at Faught Stadium. The 12th ranked Grizzlies have now won 30 consecutive HCAC games – the third longest streak in NCAA Division III. Offensively, Jonny West (Speedway, Ind./H.S.) ended the afternoon throwing for four touchdowns and 257 yards. The senior leads all NCAA Division III quarterbacks with 25 touchdowns on the season. Zach Cole (Middletown, Ind./Shenandoah) had a game-high six receptions for 41 yards and a score. Defensively, sophomore Jeremiah Windell (Corydon, Ind./Corydon Central) led the team with nine tackles, while senior Colin Gallagher (Valparaiso, Ind./Wheeler) recorded six stops and recovered a fumble. Franklin will travel to Rose-Hulman Saturday afternoon for a 1:30 PM kickoff as both teams sit 4-0 in HCAC action. Anderson will return home to face Earlham Saturday as both teams look for their first conference win of the season.
Hanover College (2-4, 2-2, HCAC) was dominant in a 41-0 Homecoming win over Bluffton University (1-6, 1-4 HCAC) Saturday. The Panthers' defense limited the visiting Beavers to only 126 yards of total offense, while senior quarterback Dexter Britt (Louisville, Ky./Male) and junior running back Spencer Corrao (New Albany, Ind./Our Lady of Providence) combined for five touchdowns in the win. Hanover's defense surrendered only 64 yards on the ground and 62 through the air while recording its eight consecutive win against Bluffton and the first shutout against the Beavers since a 24-0 triumph during the 1980 campaign. Hanover piled up a season-high 431 yards of offense, including 177 yards in the decisive second quarter. Britt completed 17 of his 24 passes for 232 yards with a touchdown, while rushing for 46 yards and two scores. Corrao carried the ball 19 times for a game-best 126 yards and two touchdowns, while also adding one receiving score on the afternoon. Hanover will take its two-game winning streak to Defiance Saturday. Bluffton will return to action on Saturday, November 2 at home against Anderson.
Manchester University (2-5, 2-3 HCAC) turned to a strong balance in its rushing and passing attacks to earn a 42-13 win at Earlham College (1-5, 0-4 HCAC) Saturday. The Spartans rushed for 180 yards and threw for 166 more as part of a 346-yard offensive attack. Senior quarterback Nick Williams (Fort Wayne, Ind./Heritage) threw for 166 yards and added 69 yards on the ground, while senior running back Joe Hunter (Rushville, Ind./H.S.) topped the rushing charge with 78 yards on 21 carries. The Manchester defense forced five Earlham turnovers on the afternoon. Senior linebacker Zach Dashner (South Bend, Ind.) recovered a fumble and added an interception to lead the defense. Earlham's offense was led by sophomore quarterback Matt Couch (Versailles, Ky./Woodford Co.). Couch threw for 293 yards and a touchdown, while adding a team-high 27 yards and a score on the ground. Sophomore Jalen Kenner (Reserve, La./East St. John) hauled in 10 receptions for 150 yards and a score. Manchester will play host to Mount St. Joseph Saturday, while Earlham will travel to Anderson.
Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology (4-2, 4-0 HCAC) was IDLE this week and will host Franklin at 1:30 PM Saturday.