Saturday, October 19, 2013
The College of Mount St. Joseph 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 on Homecoming weekend. The Lions, 4-2 overall, will put their 4-1 conference record on the line on Oct. 26 when they play at Manchester College (2-5, 2-3 HCAC). The Mount holds the second-best HCAC record behind co-leaders Rose-Hulman and Franklin (both at 4-0).
Defiance started out the scoring in the game at 11:50 in the first quarter, when they scored on an 18-yard interception return. The Mount's Shane Kelly booted an 27-yard field goal later in the quarter and that was followed by a 76-yard scoring play by Defiance to put the Yellow Jackets up, 14-3. The Mount then got their offense in high gear, with Antonio Banks (Middletown, OH/Middletown) rambling for a 14-yard TD run and Caleb Watkins (Middletown, OH/Middletown) hooking up with Leonard Riston (Cincinnati, OH/Withrow) on a seven-yard TD pass, putting the Mount ahead, 17-14. Defiance would connect on a 22-yard field goal right before the half, knotting the score at 17-all heading into the locker room.
In the third quarter, Banks added his second TD run of the game, this time from 22 yards out, and Watkins hit John Peters (West Chester, OH/Lakota West) and Trey McPhail (Nashville, TN/Father Ryan) with scoring passes, to give the Mount a commanding 37-17 lead. Konnor Blevins (Cincinnati, OH/Lakota West) would take back an interception 72 yards for a score, sandwiched around two Defiance TDs in the fourth quarter, for the game's final margin.
Banks finished the game with 135 yards rushing on 25 carries while Riston hauled in a team-high seven passes for 76 yards. Watkins was 12-for-26 for 176 yards, three TDs and one interception.
The Lions finished with 327 yards of offense, while their defense intercepted two passes and had three sacks. Darius Gilbert (Hamilton, OH/Hamilton) led the defense with eight tackles, including five stops for loss yardage, while forcing a fumble. Adam Bigelow (Cincinnati, OH/Anderson) chipped in seven tackles.