/seasons/2012/contrib/20121124x5rp4v

Hobart’s ground game, defense carries Statesmen to NCAA 3rd round

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GENEVA, N.Y.—Seventh-ranked Hobart College ran for 286 yards and five touchdowns while limiting No. 13/24 Wittenberg University to a season-low 135 yards of total offense as the Statesmen advanced to the third round of the NCAA Division III Football Championship by a score of 35-10 on Boswell Field today.

 

In blustery and at times snowy conditions, Hobart (12-0) kept the ball on the ground and dominated time of possession (39:02-20:58). Junior running back Steven Webb produced his fourth 100-yard rushing game of the season with 130 yards on 19 carries. Senior tailback Bobby Dougherty added 85 yards on 20 carries. The Statesmen completed only five passes (on 11 attempts) for 75 yards. Senior wideout Junior Woodard had two catches for 41 yards and sophomore tight end Mike Berkowitz caught two passes for 38 yards.

 

On defense, senior linebacker Andrew Klindera made a team-high eight tackles and forced a fumble and sophomore defensive end Tyre Coleman registered seven tackles, including four for a loss with a pair of sacks.

 

The Tigers (10-2) came into the game 21st in the nation in passing efficiency, but managed just 109 yards through the air, less than half of their season average (259.2 yds/g). Junior quarterback Reed Florence was 13-of-28 for 109 yards and was picked off once and sacked three times. Junior wideout Desi Kirkman was his top target with five receptions for 33 yards. Junior running back JaVanh Sanders ran for 47 yards and a touchdown and caught four passes for 35 yards.

 

A low snap and short punt by Hobart set up the first scoring drive of the game. Wittenberg took over at the Hobart 20. Four plays later, the Tigers missed a 35-yard field goal attempt into a strong wind, but a running into the kicker penalty gave the visitors a do-over. This time Sean Williams' 30-yard attempt was good for a 3-0 lead late in the first quarter.

 

Before the end of the opening frame, the Statesmen found themselves in good field position after sophomore Jacob Price blocked a Wittenberg punt that Hobart recovered at the Wittenberg 10. The Statesmen couldn't cash in however, fumbling a handoff on the very next play.

 

The Statesmen took the lead midway through the second quarter when Nick Strang broke free for a 30-yard touchdown run that capped off a 6-play, 71-yard drive. First-year James Hull's PAT gave Hobart a 7-3 lead that carried over into halftime.

 

The Statesmen used a little razzle dazzle to open the second half. On the first play from scrimmage, sophomore quarterback Patrick Conlan took a pitch on a fake reverse and completed a 30-yard pass to Woodard, who has caught at least one pass in 32 consecutive games, matching the Hobart record. Eight plays later, sophomore fullback Dominique Ellis bulled his way into the end zone from 1-yard out for a 14-3 lead.

 

The Tigers answered with a 6-play, 60-yard drive that Sanders finished off with a 3-yard run. The extra point made it a 14-10 Hobart lead.

 

The Statesmen were forced to punt on their next possession, but Wittenberg muffed the return and junior Tom Elder dove on the loose ball to set Hobart up at the Tigers' 23. Seven play later, the Statesmen attempted a 28-yard field goal, but a bad snap gave the defense just enough time to break through the line and block the kick.

 

Hobart regained the momentum thanks to Coleman's second sack. As he closed in on Florence on a third and 16 play, Coleman swatted the ball out of his hand. Junior defensive tackle Cory Einbeck recovered the fumble to set the offense up at the Wittenberg 17.

 

Two plays later, senior quarterback Kelly Olney scored on a 12-yard sweep right, scoring on a dive at the pylon. Hull's extra point put the Statesmen up 21-10.

 

The Tigers scored 32-unanswered points in the first round of the playoffs to wipe out a 22-point deficit and knock off Heidelberg, but there would be no rally today. Hobart's defense forced Wittenberg to go three and out on its first two fourth quarter drives and junior corner back Kevin Hearon ended the Tigers' final possession with an interception at the Statesmen 35 and a 16-yard return.

 

Meanwhile, Hobart used a 7-play, 56-yard drive to go up 28-10 thanks to Dougherty's 2-yard plunge. The touchdown was his 19th rushing TD of the year, tying the Statesmen season record set by Don Aleksiewicz '73 in 1971. Webb closed out the day's scoring on the next Hobart drive with a spectacular 57-yard run that went from sideline to sideline and included at least one would-be tackler getting hurdled.

 

The Statesmen will face St. Thomas in the third round at noon on Saturday, Dec. 1. The fourth-ranked Tommies defeated No. 17 Elmhurst 24-17.  The NCAA Football Committee will announce the host teams for the third round tomorrow.

GAME NOTES

Hobart is 12-0 for the first time in program history. The previous record for wins in a season was nine. … The Statesmen will play a 13th game in a single season for the first time since 1902 (4-8-1). The school record for games in a season is 14 set in 1897 (8-6-0). … Woodard tied the record of 32 consecutive games with a catch set by Dan Suozzi '05 from 2001 to 2004. … The Hobart record for points in a season is 122 set by Aleksiewicz in 1971. Dougherty has 114 points. … Webb is the first Hobart running back to go over 1,000 yards in a season since Doug Blakowski '07 ran for 1,054 yards in 2006. Webb has 1,094 yards this year. … Dougherty has 985 yards rushing. Hobart hasn't had a pair of 1,000-yard rushers since Ed Cooney '80 (1,197) and Jack Davis '78 (1,074) accomplished the feat in 1977. … Only a sophomore, Coleman is just 3.5 sacks away from Dave Russell's career record of 33. … Junior Devin Worthington (4 tkls, sack today) is only seven tackles for a loss away from Rob Gould's career record. … Hull has made 57 PATs this year, nine more than any kicker in Hobart history in a single season. … This is the first team in Hobart history to go over 5,000 yards of total offense in a season (5,092). … Hobart has 41 sacks this season, three more than the previous team record. 

Sep. 23: All times Eastern
Final
at Framingham State 50, Massachusetts Maritime 7
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Muhlenberg 56, at Juniata 40
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at Dean 25, Becker 10
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Salisbury 27, at TCNJ 7
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MIT 38, at Catholic 21
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Merchant Marine 56, at Maine Maritime 31
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at Hobart 34, Endicott 17
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at Morrisville State 44, Nichols 22
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at Delaware Valley 27, Stevenson 7
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at Albright 9, Widener 7
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Christopher Newport 16, at Montclair State 8
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at Westminster (Pa.) 41, Bethany 14
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Middlebury 41, at Bowdoin 14
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Williams 24, at Colby 7
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Amherst 36, at Hamilton 6
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Ursinus 35, at Moravian 17
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Trinity (Conn.) 51, at Bates 0
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at LaGrange 38, Brevard 28
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Geneva 33, at Thiel 24
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at Plymouth State 37, Mass-Dartmouth 7
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Kean 28, at Southern Virginia 14
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Frostburg State 24, at Rowan 10
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Union 17, at Curry 14
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at Carnegie Mellon 37, Thomas More 17
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Lycoming 44, at King's 41
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at Western New England 21, Husson 14
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Johns Hopkins 41, at Dickinson 10
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at DePauw 51, Wooster 24
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at Ohio Wesleyan 37, Allegheny 21
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at Misericordia 43, Wilkes 14
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at Alfred 45, Rochester 7
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Wesley 66, at William Paterson 0
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at N.C. Wesleyan 35, Maryville (Tenn.) 25
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Huntingdon 31, at Ferrum 28
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at McDaniel 27, Gettysburg 20
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at Buffalo State 33, RPI 21
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Franklin and Marshall 27, at Susquehanna 24
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at Denison 45, Oberlin 17
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at Northwestern (Minn.) 10, Westminster (Mo.) 7
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at Eureka 44, Crown 20
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at Lebanon Valley 24, FDU-Florham 14
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at Heidelberg 47, John Carroll 21
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at Ohio Northern 35, Otterbein 7
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at Mount Union 55, Baldwin Wallace 7
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at Rose-Hulman 37, Defiance 14
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at Marietta 49, Muskingum 25
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Franklin 59, at Bluffton 30
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at Hanover 64, Anderson 21
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Mount St. Joseph 31, at Manchester 14
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Worcester State 34, at Westfield State 10
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Coast Guard 13, at Norwich 9
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at Fitchburg State 31, Bridgewater State 29
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Wittenberg 48, at Kenyon 11
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at Wabash 25, Hiram 21
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North Central (Ill.) 51, at Millikin 21
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at Millsaps 17, Sewanee 13
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at Rhodes 35, Birmingham-Southern 9
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at Hendrix 36, Austin 24
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at Martin Luther 34, Greenville 20
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at Trinity (Texas) 41, Chapman 35
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at Loras 73, Buena Vista 34
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at Wartburg 30, Washington U. 20
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at Gustavus Adolphus 51, Hamline 7
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Augsburg 48, at Carleton 28
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at Bethel 64, St. Olaf 7
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at Luther 21, Dubuque 17
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at Central 52, Nebraska Wesleyan 27
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Simpson 38, at Coe 33
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Wheaton (Ill.) 40, at Elmhurst 15
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St. Norbert 66, at Grinnell 13
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at Knox 13, Ripon 6
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at MacMurray 32, Iowa Wesleyan 14
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Hardin-Simmons 63, at Howard Payne 3
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Southwestern 37, at Louisiana College 34
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Monmouth 26, at Macalester 0
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at St. Thomas 20, St. John's 17
@ Target Field, Minneapolis
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at Springfield 42, WPI 10
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at Cornell 55, Beloit 36
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at Brockport 28, Utica 14
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at Hartwick 24, St. John Fisher 21
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at UW-La Crosse 41, Carroll 6
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at St. Scholastica 37, Minnesota-Morris 3
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at George Fox 44, UW-Eau Claire 0
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at Western Connecticut 37, Salve Regina 23
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2nd - 9:11
14 Adrian
21 UW-Stevens Point
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10 Tufts
0 Wesleyan
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6:00 PM
Methodist at Averett
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7 Centre
14 Berry
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7 Waynesburg
28 Case Western Reserve
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7:00 PM
St. Vincent at Grove City
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7:00 PM
North Park at Illinois Wesleyan
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7:00 PM
Texas Lutheran at Mary Hardin-Baylor
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2nd - 01:07
14 Lakeland
34 UW-Platteville
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7:00 PM
Carthage at Augustana
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7:00 PM
Chicago at Illinois College
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7:00 PM
McMurry at Sul Ross State
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13 Capital
14 Wilmington
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8:00 PM
Lake Forest at Lawrence
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Belhaven at East Texas Baptist
1st - 06:36
7 Arizona Christian
0 Whittier
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Sep. 23: All times Eastern
Final
at Delaware Valley 27, Stevenson 7
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Wesley 66, at William Paterson 0
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at Alfred 45, Rochester 7
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Johns Hopkins 41, at Dickinson 10
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Frostburg State 24, at Rowan 10
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at Heidelberg 47, John Carroll 21
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at Mount Union 55, Baldwin Wallace 7
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Wittenberg 48, at Kenyon 11
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at Wabash 25, Hiram 21
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Hardin-Simmons 63, at Howard Payne 3
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North Central (Ill.) 51, at Millikin 21
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Wheaton (Ill.) 40, at Elmhurst 15
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at St. Thomas 20, St. John's 17
@ Target Field, Minneapolis
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at Brockport 28, Utica 14
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End of 2nd
7 Waynesburg
28 Case Western Reserve
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7:00 PM
North Park at Illinois Wesleyan
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2nd - 01:07
14 Lakeland
34 UW-Platteville
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7:00 PM
Texas Lutheran at Mary Hardin-Baylor
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