TERRE HAUTE, Ind. -- Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology scored 20 unanswered points in the second half to claim a 29-14 football victory over Kalamazoo College on Saturday night at Cook Stadium in the season opener for both teams.
Junior Austin Swenson finished 28-44 through the air for 294 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions to lead the offensive attack. Sophomore Kevin Dufauchard balanced the attack with 98 rushing yards and one touchdown.
Junior Joe Moehrle hauled in a team-high six catches for 106 yards and one touchdown. Junior Alec Fisher had 93 yards and one touchdown reception on five catches, and senior Aaron Abbott added five catches for 29 yards.
Defensively, a balanced team performance featured Kevin Nowak and Kaelen Garner with a team-high five tackles and one interception. Freshman Matt Michalak forced one fumble and the Engineer defense broke up eight passes and recorded three sacks in the victory.
Senior Craig Larew led the special teams with a 3-3 performance on extra points and seven punts with four kicks inside the 20-yard line.
Rose-Hulman's defense held Alex White of Kalamazoo to just 11-46 through the air for 99 yards and two touchdowns. Shon Powell rushed for 65 yards for the Hornets, and Collin Feilla had both touchdown receptions.
Kalamazoo jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the first quarter by relying on a short field for two possessions. The Fightin' Engineer defense responded to shutout the Hornets for the remaining 52 minutes of the contest.
Rose-Hulman narrowed the game to 14-9 by halftime. Abbott had a three-yard touchdown run to make the score 14-7 late in the first quarter. The Engineers then tackled Kalamazoo punter George Fishback in the endzone for a safety to bring the margin within 14-9.
In the second half, both teams battled to a scoreless draw for much of the third quarter before a a 43-yard run by Dufauchard to the 2-yard line proved one of the biggest plays of the night. Dufuchard put Rose-Hulman ahead 14-13 with a two-yard touchdown run to cap the drive.
Playing ahead, the Rose-Hulman defense began to apply more pressure to the Kalamazoo offense and relied on two big touchdown passes to secure the victory. Swenson and Fisher connected on a 45-yard scoring strike to make the score 22-14 with 9:21 left. Later, Swenson and Moehrle connected on a 54-yard touchdown pass to give Rose-Hulman its final margin of victory.
Rose-Hulman stands 1-0 on the season and returns to action at Illinois College next Saturday night. Kalamazoo dropped to 0-1.