/seasons/2012/contrib/2012112497eh3k

Hobart Pulls Away From Wittenberg In NCAA Tournament

More news about: Wittenberg

GENEVA, NY – The Wittenberg Tigers were held to a season-low 135 yards of offense in a 35-10 loss to Hobart College in the second round of the NCAA Division III Tournament.

Wittenberg's previous low yardage total in 2012 was 254 yards in an Oct. 6 loss to Wabash. The offensive output was the lowest for the Tigers (10-2) since a 27-6 loss at Wooster in the 2008 season finale.

High winds, swirling snow showers and a wind chill in the low 20s hampered the Tigers (10-2), who a week earlier had thrown for 346 yards and five touchdowns in a thrilling come-from-behind first-round victory over Heidelberg. Junior quarterback Reed Florence (South Charleston, Ohio/Southeastern) completed 13-of-28 passes in the game for 109 yards, but just one covered more than 20 yards.

The Statesmen contained Wittenberg's passing attack primarily by bottling up Florence, who scrambled to great effect a week earlier. He was sacked three times and intercepted once as the Tigers managed just 26 yards rushing in the game. The Tigers were playing without the North Coast Athletic Conference Newcomer of the Year, freshman tailback Jimmy Dehnke (Canton, Ohio/Massillon Jackson), due to injury.

Despite the obstacles, it wasn't until the fourth quarter that the seventh-ranked Statesmen (12-0) took control. Hobart piled up 286 yards and five touchdowns on the ground, but over the first 30 minutes of the game, those figures were just 74 yards, including a 30-yard scoring run by quarterback Nick Strang in the second quarter.

Hobart led 7-3 at halftime and then scored on the opening drive of the third quarter. Wittenberg answered with its best drive of the game, marching 60 yards in six plays as junior tailback JaVanh Sanders (Las Vegas, Nev./Centennial) scored from three yards out.

The Tiger defense stopped Hobart on its next drive, setting the stage for the key sequence of the game. It started with a mistake on the ensuing punt return that flipped the field position. After junior defensive tackle Josh Montgomery (Reynoldsburg, Ohio/Reynoldsburg) blocked a field goal, Florence fumbled and the Statesmen punched the ball in two plays later to take a 21-10 lead.

Wittenberg never got the momentum back as Hobart's rushing attack took over. The Statesmen completed just one pass in the second half – on a reverse option pass on the second play from scrimmage in the third period – but they wore the Tigers down with scoring drives of 56 and 62 yards in the fourth quarter.

"I thought our guys played hard," said Head Coach Joe Fincham. "There's no doubt that there were a handful of plays that made the game a lot different than what it could have been. We just didn't make the plays when we needed them."

For the game, Hobart had 362 yards of total offense. Fincham offered praise to his defense, which was led by a trio of players with nine tackles each – junior linebacker Spencer Leno (Massillon, Ohio/Massillon), junior linebacker Evan Killilea (Columbus, Ohio/DeSales) and junior safety Heath Eby (Medina, Ohio/Cloverleaf).

Sanders picked up 47 yards on 16 carries and 35 yards on four receptions to account for a majority of Wittenberg's offensive output. Junior wide receiver Desi Kirkman (Lima, Ohio/Central Catholic) added five catches for 33 yards.

Hobart advanced the national quarterfinals for the first time in program history. The Statesmen will take on St. Thomas (Minn.) on Saturday, Dec. 1.

Nov. 18: All times Eastern
Final
Husson 23, at Springfield 21
Video Video Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Berry 34, Huntingdon 20
Video Video Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Delaware Valley 35, Western New England 0
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at Brockport 66, Plymouth State 0
Video Box Score Recap
Final
Frostburg State 35, at Wittenberg 7
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at Mount Union 21, Washington and Lee 0
Video Box Score Photos
Final
at Wesley 45, RPI 27
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at Washington and Jefferson 31, Johns Hopkins 28
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at Trine 63, Monmouth 24
Video Box Score Photos
Final
at Mary Hardin-Baylor 50, Chapman 6
Video Box Score Recap
Final
Case Western Reserve 28, at Illinois Wesleyan 0
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at UW-Oshkosh 63, Lakeland 0
Video Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at St. Thomas 47, Eureka 8
Video Video Box Score Recap Photos Photos
Final - OT
at Wartburg 35, Franklin 34
Video Preview Box Score Live stats Photos
Final
at North Central (Ill.) 17, St. John's 7
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at Linfield 27, Hardin-Simmons 13
Box Score Photos
Nov. 25: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Wesley at Brockport
12:00 PM
Case Western Reserve at Mount Union
Video Live stats Audio Tickets
12:00 PM
Frostburg State at Washington and Jefferson
Video Live stats Audio
12:00 PM
Husson at Delaware Valley
Live stats
1:00 PM
Berry at St. Thomas
Live stats Audio Audio Video
1:00 PM
North Central (Ill.) at UW-Oshkosh
Video Live stats Audio
1:00 PM
Linfield at Mary Hardin-Baylor
1:00 PM
Trine at Wartburg
Nov. 17: All times Eastern
Final
Merchant Marine 35, at Buffalo State 20
@ Newark, Del.
Video Box Score Photos
Nov. 18: All times Eastern
Final
Muhlenberg 32, at Carnegie Mellon 6
@ Newark, Del.
Video Box Score
Final
at Franklin and Marshall 21, Widener 7
Video Box Score
Final
Susquehanna 28, at Albright 9
Video Box Score
Final
at Berry 34, Huntingdon 20
Video Video Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Brockport 66, Plymouth State 0
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at Mount Union 21, Washington and Lee 0
Video Box Score Photos
Final
at Trine 63, Monmouth 24
Video Box Score Photos
Final
at Wesley 45, RPI 27
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at Washington and Jefferson 31, Johns Hopkins 28
Video Box Score Recap
Final
Frostburg State 35, at Wittenberg 7
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at Delaware Valley 35, Western New England 0
Video Box Score Recap
Final
Husson 23, at Springfield 21
Video Video Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Framingham State 48, Curry 14
Video Box Score
Final
Cortland 35, at Union 28
Box Score Recap
Final
Case Western Reserve 28, at Illinois Wesleyan 0
Video Box Score Recap
Final - OT
at Wartburg 35, Franklin 34
Video Preview Box Score Live stats Photos
Final
at Mary Hardin-Baylor 50, Chapman 6
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at UW-Oshkosh 63, Lakeland 0
Video Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at North Central (Ill.) 17, St. John's 7
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at St. Thomas 47, Eureka 8
Video Video Box Score Recap Photos Photos
Final
at Linfield 27, Hardin-Simmons 13
Box Score Photos
Final
at Ithaca 27, Salisbury 17
@ Newark, Del.
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at WPI 17, SUNY-Maritime 3
Box Score Recap
Nov. 19: All times Eastern
Final
at Alfred 29, Stevenson 16
@ University of Delaware
Video Box Score Recap