Cody Miller's two-yard rushing touchdown off an option-pitch from Ryan Kramer gave the St. John Fisher College football team a 13-7 win in overtime in its season and home-opener over Thomas More College in a matchup between two top 20 teams.
The No. 11 Cardinals outgained the No. 20 Saints, 403-130, including Kramer's 35 rushes for 127 yards from under center, but were plagued by four turnovers, including two first-half interceptions inside the Thomas More 10-yard line.
The Fisher defense only forced one turnover, an interception by All-American Troy Sant in the third quarter, but was suffocating throughout the evening, and allowed just six yards of total offense over after the opening two quarters.
Fisher scored on the game's opening drive, as the Cardinals marched 72 yards on 16 plays with Tyler Stell scoring his first career touchdown on a nine-yard pass from Kramer. The drive took nearly eight minutes off the clock.
The Saints evened the score with 10:18 left in the second quarter with Devin Kendrick scoring on a six-yard pass from Luke Magness. The drive went 91 yards on 11 plays, with a 31-yard pass from Magness to Domonique Hayden sparking the drive.
It would remain 7-7 for the rest of regulation. The Cardinals nearly scored on the final drive of regulation when Kramer completed a 42-yard pass to Kevin Francis to the Thomas More 10-yard line with under one second left. The Cardinals, who didn't have a time out left, were able to get a play off, but Kramer was tackled behind the line of scrimmage as time expired.
In overtime, Fisher's Joe Leavell and Cody Foster sacked Magness on the first play for a loss of five yards. After two incompletions, Magness completed a pass for just five yards on the 4th-and-15 play.
The Cardinals capitalized after the defensive stop. Kramer rushed for nine yards to get inside the red zone, and Nathan Nigolian made a 13-yard completion to the Thomas More 2-yard line to set up Miller's game-winning score.
Miller rushed the ball 18 times for 64 yards, while Nigolian caught seven passes for 47 yards to lead Fisher's receiving core. Kramer completed 17-of-24 passes for 186 yards.
For Thomas More, Magness was 12-for-23 through the air for 85 yards. As a team, the Saints gained just 45 yards on 26 carries.
Travis Tones led the Fisher defense with eight tackles, while Leavell was in on seven stops. Foster and Nick LoBrutto each registered 1.0 sacks.
For Thomas More, Nick Pennekamp made 13 tackles, while Alex Taylor was credited with 12 stops. Both players also recovered Fisher fumbles.
Fisher returns to action next Saturday at Washington & Jefferson College.