Saturday, September 28, 2013
First-year Mount quarterback Caleb Watkins (Middletown, OH/Middletown) ran for three TDs and threw for two more scores, as the Lions posted a 52-28 home win over HCAC-foe Blufton Univeristy. With the victory, the Lions, 2-1 overall, stay tied atop the conference standings with Franklin College and Rose-Hulman, with all three holding 2-0 marks. The Mount returns to HCAC action on Oct. 5 when they play at Anderson Univeristy (0-3, 0-1).
The 52 points scored were the fourth-most in Mount history, while the 552 yards on offense were just six yards short of the team's all-time game record. The 80 combined points by the two teams was the sixth-highest one game total in Mount history.
The Lions' offense was efficient and productive early on in the game on Saturday against the Beavers. Watkins' 23-yard dash into the zone culminated an eight play-73 yard, opening drive that covered 3:20 on the clock. Shane Kelly (Cincinnati, OH/Turpin) converted the PAT kick to give his team a 7-0 lead. After a fumble recovery by Brent McCleerey (Mooresville, IN/Monrovia) on Bluffton's first drive, the Lions would run off a 12-play drive which saw Charles McCall (Miami, FL/Miami Norland) take a pass from Watkins 15 yards for a score. Kelly's PAT kick gave the Mount a 14-0 first quarter lead. In seven first half possessions, the Mount would score three TDs, kick a 35-yard field goal, miss a field goal attempt, punt once and have the half end during their final possession. The Lions held an 18:19-11:41 possession time lead at the half, as well as an edge in offense, 317-164 yards. Bluffton's lone score in the first half came on a three-yard TD run early in the second half, as the Mount led 24-7 at the intermission.
The Mount would add three, third quarter TDs to Bluffton's one score, as the lead was never threatened in the second half. Trey McPhail (Nashville, TN/Father Ryan) caught a 14-yard TD from Watkins, while Watkins and quarterback Mike Williams (Cincinnati, OH/Taft) added rushing scores. McCall added his second TD of the game midway through the fourth quarter, scoring on a 22-yard run, making the score 52-21. With the Lions using a lot of different personnel throughout the second half, the Beavers added a late TD to make the final margin, 52-28.
Watkins finished 16-of-23 passing for 199 yards and two scores while David Fulcher (Cincinnati, OH/Mason) led a Mount ground attack that piled up 348 yards rushing in 55 attempts (6.3 per carry). Fulcher had nine carries for 133 yards. John Peters (West Chester, OH/Lakota West), Denzel Norvell (Dayton, OH/Thurgood Marshall) and Leonard Riston (Cincinnati, OH/Withrow) each had four receptions for the Lions. Samuel Fowler (Cincinnati, OH/Northwest) had a team-high six tackles for the Mount. Gabe Stiver (Cincinnati, OH/Moeller) and McCleerey had fumble recoveries.