No. 9 North Central (Ill.) Downs Carthage, 42-10, on Oct. 20
The Carthage College football team (3-4, 1-3 College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin) lost to CCIW-opponent and No. 9 North Central College (6-1, 4-0 CCIW), 42-10, on Saturday night, Oct. 20 at Art Keller Field in Kenosha, Wis.
Following a scoreless first period, North Central broke the ice with a touchdown at 13:39 second period. Jordan Tassio's four-yard run capped a 16-play, 94-yard drive that ate up six minutes and 44 seconds. After an interception of a A.J. Simoncelli pass, the Cardinals struck again at 6:19 on a six-play, 52-yard scoring drive that ended with a one-yard Tassio touchdown carry. Another interception led to North Central's third touchdown. The Cardinals went up, 21-0, just as the half ended on another six-play, 52-yard scoring drive that ended with an 11-yard touchdown pass from Peter Sorenson to Spencer Stanek with 26 seconds left.
North Central took a 28-0 at 10:30 third period on a five-play, 61-yard drive that ended with a one-yard carry by Tassio. The Cardinals made it 35-0 at 14:53 fourth period on a 15-pass from Spencer Stanek to Jeff Stolzenburg. Carthage got the scoreboard at 13:11 fourth quarter when Zac Pallissard returned an interception 42 yards for a touchdown. North Central increased its lead to 42-7 at 5:53 on six-play, 59-yard scoring drive that ended with a one-yard carry by Nick Kukuc. The Red Men's Brett Bukari closed out the scoring with a 32-yard field goal at 2:39 for the final, 42-10 margin.
North Central rolled up 418 total offensive yards, 181 yards rushing and 237 yards passing, while Carthage collected 213 total yards, 116 on the ground and 97 in the air. Cardinal quarterback Spencer Stanek completed 18-of-26 passes for 220 yards. Chad O'Kane caught four passes for 70 yards, with Nick Kukuc rushing for 129 yards on 14 carries. Carthage's A.J. Simoncelli (Fr., Downers Grove, Ill./South) completed five-of-12 passes for 30 yards, and Jonny Brewster (So., Loveland, Ohio/Kings Mills-Kings) six-of-13 passes for 67 yards. Running back Derek Bellamy (So., Sacramento, Calif./Monterrey Trail) ran for 111 yards on 18 carries. Carthage cornerback Mickey Johnson (So., Chicago, Ill./St. Rita) collected a game-high nine tackles (8 solo, 1 assisted), with defensive end Mike Merucci Sr., Kenosha, Wis./Bradford) picking up six tackles, including four tackles-for-loss and a two sacks.
Red Men head coach Tim Rucks, who felt ill in the first half, was taken to the hospital in the second half to be examined. No further details on his condition are available at this time. Carthage travels to Rock Island, Ill., on Saturday, Oct. 27 to play conference-opponent Augustana College (Ill., 3-4, 2-2 CCIW) on Saturday, Oct. 27 in a 1 p.m. game at Ericson Field.