DePauw scored 28 unanswered points in the first half and improved to 5-0 for the first time since 1980 with a 42-18 Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference victory over Rhodes on Old Gold Day at Blackstock Stadium.
The Tigers also improved to 4-0 in SCAC play and are the conference's lone unbeaten squad. The Lynx dropped to 2-3 overall and 1-1 in the SCAC.
DePauw got off to a slow start as the Tigers just missed a 44-yard field goal on their opening drive and lost possession on a fumbled punt return on the next. The Tigers' defense stopped Rhodes on downs at the DePauw 31 and the offense drove eight plays and 69 yards with Michael Engle tossing a 17-yard touchdown pass to Colin Doran with 3:27 left in the first.
Taking over near midfield on their next series, the Tigers drove 54 yards in eight plays with Derrick Karazsia rushing in from one yard to make it 14-0 with 12:34 remaining in the half.
Another DePauw defensive stop gave the Tigers the ball at their own 38 and Engle teamed with Nathan Evans for a 12-yard score with 5:12 left in the half to make it 21-0. Rhodes drove to the DePauw 35, but again the defense stopped the Lynx.
The Tigers took over on their own 35 with just 1:05 left in the half and Engle completed all five passes on the series with the last covering 18 yards to Brayden Dahlstrom with just 28 seconds remaining giving DePauw a 28-0 lead at the intermission. The Tigers racked up 301 yards of offense in 41 first-half plays and gained 18 first downs, while the Lynx were limited to just 96 total yards.
Rhodes reached paydirt on its first possession of the second half as Tyler Perkins completed a 4-yard pass to Buddy Legens with 12:22 left in the third. The point-after failed and DePauw still led 28-6. Kicker Lukas Stockhausen recovered his own on-side kick and the Lynx closed the gap to 28-12 on Perkins' 3-yard keeper with 8:05 remaining in the third.
DePauw got back on track on its next series as Engle connected with all-America receiver Alex Koors on a 2-yard scoring pass at the 6:14 mark of the third.
Rhodes countered on the next series as Perkins drove the Lynx 72 yards with three passes including the 34-yard scoring strike to Jake Jackson with 5:07 left in the quarter.
The game's final points came in the fourth when Engle teamed with Dahlstrom for a 13-yard score to make it 42-18 with 5:41 left in the contest.
DePauw outgained Rhodes, 462-332 including a 118-84 edge on the ground. Karazsia rushed for 61 yards on 14 carries, while Jon Ellis had 47 on 17 tries. Engle completed 29 of 38 passes for 339 yards with five touchdowns and just one interception. Koors led the Tigers with eight catches for 79 yards, while Dahlstrom had seven for 104 and Doran hauled in five for 91. Koors extended his streak with at least one catch to 34 games (every game he's played at DePauw).
Perkins rushed for 84 yards on 11 carries and completed 21 of 43 for 248 yards with two scores. Legens caught seven for 42 yards and Jack Lartigue caught five for 93.
Kyle Sherer led the DePauw defense with eight tackles including a team-best 2.5 for losses totaling 11 yards. Jonathan Lambert and Matt Johnson each had six stops and Michael Fultz followed with 2.0 sacks and a team-best three quarterback hurries. Steve Valdiserri broke up three passes in the win. Andrew Meier led Rhodes with nine tackles and Clay Adams followed with eight.