(CRESTVIEW HILLS, Ky.) - Junior defensive back Zach Autenrieb (Cincinnati, Ohio/Elder) set a single-game school record with three interceptions today (Saturday, October 22, 2011) to lead the No. 8-ranked Thomas More College football team to a 41-21 win over Bethany College in a Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) game at The Bank of Kentucky Field.
With the win, the Saints improve to 7-0 overall and 6-0 in the PAC and with the loss, the Bison fall to 3-4 overall and 2-4 in the PAC.
Thomas More led 21-7 after one quarter, 28-7 at halftime and 35-14 after three quarters.
Bethany took an early 7-0 lead when Nico Irizarry scored on a three-yard pass from Matt Grimard and Stephen Amic added the point-after-attempt with 12:01 to play in the first quarter.
On the ensuing kickoff, senior running back/returner Kendall Owens (Cincinnati, Ohio/LaSalle) returned the the kick 82-yards for a touchdown and senior place kicker Aaron Walter (Cincinnati, Ohio/LaSalle) added the PAT and the Saints tied the game at 7-7 with 11:48 to play in the opening quarter.
Thomas More took an 14-7 lead when Autenrieb returned his first interception 40-yards for a touchdown and Walter added the PAT at the 6:35 mark of the first half.
The Saints extended the lead to 21-7 as time ran out in the first half when Owens scored on a 76-yard pass from junior quarterback Robert Kues (Fort Thomas, Ky./Newport Central Catholic) and Walter added the PAT.
In the second quarter, Thomas More increased the lead to 28-7 when sophomore running back Adam Rauch (Yorkville, Ind./East Central) caught a 38-yard touchdown pass from Kues and Walter added the PAT with 2:33 to play until halftime.
Sophomore running back Domonique Hayden (Lexington, Ky./Lexington Christian Academy) scored on a 38-yard run and Walter added the PAT to increase the Saints' lead to 35-7 with 3:33 to play in the third quarter.
Bethany cut the Saints' lead to 35-14 when Daryl Powell caught a 32-yard pass from Grimard and Amic added the PAT with 1:01 to play in the third quarter.
Grimard and Powell connected on a 29-yard pass and Amic added the PAT with 7:40 to play in the fourth quarter to cut the lead to 35-21.
Owens closed out the scoring with 2:00 to play in the game when he scored on a 48-yard run and Walter's PAC failed for the final score of 41-21.
Kues was seven-of-15 passing for 149 yards and two touchdowns and had six carries for 32 yards. Hayden led the Saints on the ground as he had 17 carries for 119 yards and one touchdown and added two catches for 11 yards, while Owens had six carries for 42 yards and one touchdown and one catch for 76 yards and one touchdown.
Defensively, the Saints were led by junior linebacker Nick Gramke (Cincinnati, Ohio/Elder), who had 15 tackles, including two for a loss of seven yards and Autenrieb, who finished with three tackles to go with his three interceptions. Sophomore defensive back Alex Taylor (Cincinnati, Ohio/Elder) had eight tackles and two break-ups, while senior linebacker Zach Mink (Cleves, Ohio/Taylor) had seven tackles, including one for a loss and junior linebacker Elijah Anglim (Cincinnati, Ohio/Anderson) had seven tackles, including a half tackle for a loss.
Thomas More returns to action next Saturday (October 29) when it travels to New Wilmington, Pennsylvania to play PAC rival Westminster College. Kickoff is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. at Harold Burry Stadium.