EC Battles Bluffton

EC Battles Bluffton
RICHMOND, Ind. — From the first possession of Saturday's game, the Earlham College football team battled its way through a tight contest with Bluffton University at Darrell Beane Stadium.

“I loved the spirit we played with and I’m so proud of our players," Earlham Head Coach Neil Kazmierczak said. "We have really fought. We started fighting versus Kenyon last week and we haven’t stopped."

"If we can continue that, we’re going to eventually get what we want," Kazmierczak addd. "We obviously have a lot to clean up as far as the execution, but we’ve got a lot to build on as far as the spirit and the fight in our guys.”

Although Bluffton already had a one-point lead in a Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference contest, a touchdown in the fourth quarter sealed the 28-20 win for the Beavers.

The First Drive

Earlham got on the scoreboard first when Marcus Coby (Coral Springs, FL, Heritage) caught an 11-yard pass from Alonzo Genelin (Arcadia, WI, Arcadia). A missed PAT opportunity made the score 6-0 at the 10:45 mark of the opening period. The Quakers put together an 11-play, 77-yard drive to start the afternoon.

The Beavers (2-1, 1-0) were able to respond with a touchdown with 8:30 left in the first frame to go on top 7-6.

In the second quarter, the Quakers scored on their initial possession when Genelin found Jalen Kenner (Reserve, LA, East St. John) for a 63-yard scoring strike at 14:50.

Neither team could find the end zone from that point the rest of the first half and the Quakers led 13-7 at intermission.

Extending the Lead

Earlham forced a Bluffton fumble on the first drive of the second half, but the Quakers couldn't muster any offense and punted.

After the Bluffton punt, the Quakers recovered another fumble and this time they were able to put together a short scoring drive.

Genelin hooked up with Kenner again on a 3-yard scoring pass and Earlham led 20-7 with 8:10 remaining in the third period.

Bluffton bounced back with two touchdowns and led 21-20 heading into the final stanza.

After an Earlham turnover, Bluffton scored the final touchdown of the contest to build its eight-point advantage with 11:35 remaining.

The Quakers had three more chances in the fourth quarter with the last ending with an interception in the end zone in the final minute of play.  

Genelin completed 29-of-47 passes for 296 yards and three scores.

Kenner and Coby had nine catches each. Kenner ended with 117 yards and two touchdowns, while Coby had 93 yards and the other score.

Kaleb Lingg (Dayton, OH, Northridge) led Earlham's defense with 12 tackles. Nate McCormack (Cicero, IN, Hamilton Heights) added nine stops with five coming behind the line of scrimmage. Terrell Scott (Lomita, CA, Narponne) finished with seven tackles.

Earlham (0-3, 0-1) is on the road next Saturday to face Franklin College. The HCAC affair is scheduled to begin at 1:30 p.m.

Box Score