WESTERVILLE, OHIO—Heidelberg took advantage of six Otterbein turnovers, stunning the host Cardinals, 41-20, at Homecoming Saturday in Westerville.
The game marked the 20th meeting between the two schools in the Rhine River Cup series with the Student Princes taking home the trophy for the first time since 2002. Otterbein had won the last eight meetings in the series that began with a 7-7 tie in Frankfort, Germany in 1992.
Heidelberg, which scored 24 of its 41 points off Otterbein turnovers, tallied the first two scores of the game and led, 14-0, early in the second period.
The Cardinals finally got on the board when junior quarterback Rocco Pentello ran the ball in from 4 yards out to make it 14-7 with 9:06 to play in the first half, capping off a 9-play, 62-yard drive that consumed 5:41.
That was about as close as the game would get. Heidelberg scored the next 24 points to lead, 38-7, with 3:53 to play in the third quarter.
Otterbein added two more scores—a 2-yard run by senior quarterback Austin Schlosser with 8 seconds left in the third quarter, and a 2-yard reception by graduate wide receiver Steve Kuzyk with 3:25 to play in the game.
Heidelberg generated 496 yards of offense with 303 yards coming on the ground. Otterbein rolled up 355 yards of offense with 257 yards passing.
Heidelberg sophomore running back Germany Woods rushed for 101 yards on 24 carries while freshman quarterback Mike Mees completed 14 of 25 pass attempts for 187 yards and three touchdowns.
Otterbein senior wide receiver Trey Fairchild went over the 100-yard receiving mark for the second time this season. He made eight catches for 127 yards. Schlosser completed 16 of 25 pass attempts for 244 yards and one touchdown. He threw two interceptions. Junior running back Cody Green rushed for 66 yards on nine carries.
Defensively, senior linebacker Shane Centers led the Cardinals for the third-straight game, making 11 stops, including 1.5 tackles for a loss of 3 yards.
Otterbein dropped to 1-2 overall and 0-2 in Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) play. Heidelberg improved to 2-1 overall and 1-1 in the OAC.
The Cardinals hit the road next, traveling to John Carroll Oct. 1. Kickoff is 2 p.m. Otterbein will return to Westerville Oct. 8 to take on Baldwin-Wallace under the lights. Game time is scheduled for 7 p.m.