(LATROBE, Pa.) - The eighth-ranked Thomas More College football team rallied from a 10-7 halftime deficit to defeat Saint Vincent College, 20-17, today (Saturday, October 15, 2011) in a Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) game at Chuck Noll Field in Latrobe, Pennsylvania.
With the win, the Saints improve to 6-0 overall and 5-0 in the PAC. The win also clinched the Saints their 16th winning season in the program's 22-year history. With the loss, the Bearcats fall to 3-3 overall and 2-2 in the PAC.
Thomas More led 7-3 after one quarter, Saint Vincent led 10-7 at halftime and Thomas More led 14-10 after three quarters.
The Saints took a 7-0 lead with 7:22 to play in the first quarter when sophomore running back Domonique Hayden (Lexington, Ky./Lexington Christian Academy) scored on a four-yard run and senior place kicker Aaron Walter (Cincinnati, Ohio/LaSalle) added the point-after-attempt.
Saint Vincent cut the lead to 7-3 when Morgan Porter made a 30-yard field goal with 12-seconds to play in the opening quarter.
The Bearcats took a 10-7 when Aaron Smetanka scored on a one-yard run and Porter added the PAT with 3:10 to play in the second quarter.
Thomas More retook the lead at the 14-10 when sophomore running back Adam Rauch (Yorkville, Ind./East Central) scored on a 68-yard run and Walter added the PAT with 5:33 to play in the third quarter.
The Saints increased the lead to 20-10 with 13:57 to play in the game when Rauch caught a five-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Rob Kues (Fort Thomas, Ky./Newport Central Catholic) and Walter's PAT was blocked.
Saint Vincent cut the lead to 20-17 when Mike Kale scored on a three-yard run and Porter added the PAT with 7:39 to play in the game.
Saint Vincent was driving for the go-ahead touchdown or the game-tying field goal when time ran out and the Saints earned the 20-17 win.
Offensively, the Saints were led by Rauch, who had five carries for 79 yards and one touchdown and had two catches for seven yards and one touchdown. Kues was 10-of-19 passing for 58 yards and one touchdown and had 13 carries for 29 yards, while senior running back Kendall Owens (Cincinnati, Ohio/LaSalle) had eight carries for 61 yards and one catch for nine yards and Hayden finished with 13 carries for 45 yards and one touchdown and had three catches for 21 yards.
The Saints defense was led by sophomore defensive back Alex Taylor (Cincinnati, Ohio/Elder), who had 12 tackles (eight solo, four assisted) and two interceptions. Junior linebacker Nick Gramke (Cincinnati, Ohio/Elder) had nine tackles (seven solo, two assisted) and sophomore defensive lineman Jake Smith (Newport, Ky./Newport Central Catholic) had nine tackles (four solo, five assisted), including one sack for a loss of five yards and one and a half tackles for a loss of seven yards.
Thomas More returns home next Saturday (October 22) to host Bethany College at The Bank of Kentucky Field in Crestview Hills, Kentucky. The game is scheduled to kickoff at 1:30 p.m.