Andrew Woodley -- Otterbein Sports Information
WESTERVILLE, OHIO -- A late field goal by Marietta was the difference Saturday, as the visiting team defeated the Otterbein Cardinals, 30-27, at Memorial Stadium.
With the loss, the Cardinals fall to 1-7 in the Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC), 2-7 overall. Marietta moves to 3-6 overall, 2-6 versus OAC competition.
Entering the fourth quarter, Otterbein trailed 27-20. Marietta looked poised to extend their lead to two scores with the ball on the Cardinal 12-yard line when sophomore defensive lineman Zack Grieves intercepted a Marietta to halt the Pioneer threat.
Otterbein moved the ball to the Marietta 13-yard line, but senior quarterback Austin Schlosser was intercepted on the Pioneer goal line with 5:00 left in the game.
Following the interception, the Cardinal defense forced a quick three-and-out. Marietta was forced to punt after only taking one minute and 31 seconds off of the clock.
Otterbein took over the ball on their own 40-yard line, and aided by rushes of 16 and 10 by junior running back Cody Green, drove the ball into the red zone.
Schlosser connected on a 6-yard touchdown to freshman receiver Mike Ryan to tie the game at 27-27 with 1:22 left in the fourth quarter.
The Pioneers took the ensuing possession 43 yards on eight plays. The key play, a 23-yard fourth down completion by senior quarterback Andrew Keller to classmate Chad Walker, put Marietta on the Otterbein 21-yard line. On the very next play, Pioneer place kicker Jesse Shore converted a 38-yard field goal with 1.7 seconds remaining in the game to give Marietta the victory.
Green led the Cardinal offensive attack with 153 yards rushing on 24 carries.
Schlosser finished the afternoon 18-of-32 with 199 yards and four touchdowns. He threw five interceptions.
Senior wide receiver Trey Fairchild led the Cardinal receivers with 58 yards on four catches and a touchdown. Freshman wide receiver Mike Ryan hauled in four catches for 32 yards. Ryan, a transfer from Ohio State, caught his first two touchdowns as a Cardinal.
Senior defensive end Will Brown finished the game with a career-high 3.0 sacks, while senior linebacker Shane Centers added his first-career sack. Both totaled eight tackles on the afternoon.
The Otterbein Cardinals will finish their 2011 campaign next Saturday, Nov. 12, when they host Wilmington for Senior Day at Memorial Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:30 p.m.