Football falls to Wesleyan in low-scoring contest
Wesleyan University's Devon Carrillo '17 scored on a 19-yard touchdown run with 3:19 left in the fourth quarter and lifted the Cardinals to a 15-10 NESCAC win against the Hamilton College Continentals at Hamilton's Steuben Field on Saturday afternoon.
Carrillo finished with a pair of touchdowns and a game-high 63 yards on 11 carries. Wesleyan (1-1, 1-1 NESCAC) ran for 191 yards as a team and finished with 401 yards of total offense.
Gernald Hawkins '18 passed for 157 yards and ran for 37 more for the Cardinals. Mark Piccirillo '19 was 3 of 3 passing for 53 yards. Mike Breuler '18 led Wesleyan with five catches for 57 yards.
The Cardinals' defense allowed just eight first downs and 164 yards on 54 Hamilton offensive plays. The Continentals were 4 of 17 on third-down conversions. Jon Spivey '16 and Alex Daversa-Russo '16 were credited with seven tackles apiece. Spivey had a sack and Daversa-Russo returned an interception 19 yards late in the fourth quarter. Shayne Kaminski '18 finished with five stops, including a sack.
Hamilton's Chase Rosenberg '17 passed for 148 yards and ran for 13 more. Rosenberg tossed a 24-yard touchdown to Nick Caso '16, and Pat Donahoe '16 had six catches for 52 yards. Donahoe, who is also a punter, pinned three of his eight kicks inside the Wesleyan 20 and booted one a career-high 71 yards.
Nick Sobczyk '17 led all players with a career-high 14 tackles, including a sack, for the Continentals (0-2, 0-2). Matt Glebus '17 added 10 tackles and Cade Larabee '16 and Alex Mitko '16 chipped in nine apiece. Larabee and Tyler Hudson '19 recorded sacks. Hudson has one sack in each game this season and was selected for the D3football.com Team of the Week on Sept. 29.
The Cardinals had great field position on their game-winning drive thanks to their defense. From his own 10-yard line, Donahoe got off a 41-yard punt with the wind, only to watch Carrillo return it 25 yards to the Hamilton 26. After two rushes by Jaylen Berry '18, Carrillo took the snap on third-and-3 and ran straight up the middle on a quarterback draw. He broke a tackle at the line of scrimmage, was hit again around the 5 and carried a defender into the end zone for the 15-10 lead.
Wesleyan's first attempt at a two-point conversion pass was successful, but the play was wiped out due to an offensive pass interference penalty. On the second try from the Continental 18, Hawkins found another open receiver but Hamilton's Colby Jones '19 stopped him short of the goal line.
The Continentals had one last chance to pull out a victory. On first down at his own 31, Rosenberg was sacked by Kaminski for a 7-yard loss. Rosenberg got 5 yards back on a pass to Donahoe but on third-and-12 was picked off by Daversa-Russo, who returned it 19 yards to the Hamilton 19. The Cardinals ran out the final 2:16, thanks in part to Hawkins' 17-yard scramble on fourth-and-9.
With the score tied 3-3 at the half, the Continentals went three plays and out on their first possession of the third quarter. Wesleyan then took the lead with a 10-play, 63-yard drive that covered 4:31. The drive was aided by an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on Hamilton that gave the Cardinals a first down at the Continental 19. Five plays later, Carrillo bulled his way into the end zone over right tackle on third-and-goal from the 1 with 8:21 left. The extra-point attempt was blocked by Jones and Wesleyan held a 9-3 lead.
Hamilton started its touchdown drive with great field position after the Cardinals -- from deep in their own territory -- could only muster a 29-yard punt that was fielded by Charles Ensley '17 for a fair catch at the Wesleyan 38. On the first play, Rosenberg passed to Donahoe for 11 yards and a first down. The Cardinals' defense stiffened and forced the Continentals to go for it into the wind on fourth down at the 24. Rosenberg lofted a pass to the middle of the field that Caso, with two defenders around him, caught as he fell out of the back of the end zone. Erik Fyrer '19 added the extra point for a 10-9 edge with 3:31 to go in the third quarter.
Wesleyan nearly regained the lead on their next possession but its nine-play, 65-yard drive ended at the Hamilton 1 where Carrillo lost a fumble that was recovered by the Continentals.
The first half featured six points, nine punts and a 32-yard missed field goal by Hamilton on its first possession of the afternoon. After a scoreless first quarter, the Continentals started a drive on the Cardinal 39 after a 33-yard punt. On the second play of the second quarter and the seventh play of the drive, Fyrer booted a 43-yard field goal into a stiff breeze that barely cleared the crossbar.
Wesleyan responded on their next possession with a 17-play drive that took more than six minutes off the clock. LaDarius Drew '16 ran for 28 yards and three first downs during the drive, which ended with a 28-yard field goal by Ike Fuchs '17 with 8:39 remaining in the second quarter.
The Cardinals, who overcame 107 yards in penalties, lead the all-time series 27-17-1. Wesleyan had lost two of its previous three games in Clinton.
Hamilton travels to Trinity College for another NESCAC game on Saturday, Oct. 10. The Cardinals host Colby College in conference action next Saturday as well.