Big Second Half Helps Macalester Down Carleton, 31-20

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NORTHFIELD, Minn. – The Macalester College football team won the annual contest for the Book of Knowledge, defeating host Carleton College, 31-20 Saturday afternoon at Laird Stadium. The Scots scored 21 second-half points while allowing only a late touchdown after halftime.

The victory marked the first time since 2001-02 that Macalester has beaten Carleton in consecutive seasons.

The Knights opened the game by taking the kick-off and driving 82 yards, culminating in a 5-yard touchdown pass from Christian Zaytoun to Dane Birkeland. The Scots tied the score two minutes later, when senior linebacker Phil Wettersten (Queensbury, N.Y./Queensbury) intercepted Zaytoun at the Carleton 12-yard line and ran it in to the end zone.

On the next Carleton possession, senior defensive back Chance Carnahan (Shoreview, Minn./Mounds View) picked off a Zaytoun pass and gave Macalester the ball at the Carleton 46. The Scots drove to the 1-yard line but had to settle for a 22-yard field goal by senior Matt Glasenapp (Lake City, Minn./Lake City).

Although the offense struggled to find much success early, the Macalester defense kept the Knights in check. Wettersten registered his second interception of the game at the 10:16 mark of the second quarter, and senior defensive back Jack Schultenover (Glenwood, Minn./Minnewaska Area) stopped a long Carleton drive with an interception at the 5-yard line. But the Knights answered with an interception of their own, and Zaytoun hit Emanual Williams with a 5-yard touchdown pass at the end of the first half for a 13-10 lead.

Early in the second half, a bad snap on a punt attempt put Carleton at the Macalester 19. But the Scots defense held, forcing an incomplete pass on 4th-and-3 from the 12-yard line. On the next possession, junior running back Jeremy Stephan (Duluth, Minn./Marshall) ran twice for 24 yards, setting up a 64-yard touchdown pass from senior quarterback Christian Adams (Alexandria, La./Pineville) to junior receiver Alec Beatty (Topeka, Kan./Topeka).

The Knights responded by driving deep into Macalester territory. On 4th-and-5, senior linebacker Elliot Tanin (Middleton, Wis./Middleton) registered the Scots' fifth interception of the game, returning it to the Macalester 29-yard line. Three plays later, Adams hit Beatty for another long touchdown, this time for 68 yards, to put the Scots ahead, 24-13 with 4:37 remaining in the third quarter.

Late in the fourth quarter, a 48-yard pass from Adams to Stephan put Macalester at the Carleton 7-yard line. On the next play, senior running back Matthew Bonazzoli (Swampscott, Mass./Buckingham Browne & Nichols) broke several tackles and powered into the end zone for a 31-13 lead with 3:38 remaining.

An 82-yard kick return and a 3-yard Williams touchdown catch with 2:32 left brought the Knights to within 31-20. But it was not enough to prevent the Scots from retaining the Book of Knowledge for another year.

Adams finished the day 20-for-34 for 341 yards and two touchdowns. Beatty caught five passes for 167 yards and two scores, while Stephan had five receptions for 95 yards to go with 27 rushing yards. On defense, senior linebacker Brett Graham (Celebration, Fla./Celebration) had nine tackles, and Wettersten finished with eight tackles, a sack and two interceptions.

For Carleton, Zaytoun was 20-for-33 for 148 yards, three touchdowns and five interceptions. Williams caught nine passes for 35 yards.

Macalester plays Hamline for the Paint Bucket next Saturday, Sept. 9 in the Scots' home opener. Kick-off is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. at Macalester Stadium.

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