/seasons/2018/contrib/20181124hcn54q

Muhlenberg advances to national quarterfinals

More news about: Muhlenberg

Record-setting performances on both sides of the ball highlighted a historic day as the Muhlenberg football team defeated Randolph-Macon, 35-6, in the second round of the NCAA playoffs.

The win sends the Mules – who tied a school record with their 11th win of the season – to the national quarterfinals for the first time ever. Muhlenberg (11-1) will travel to top-ranked Mount Union, the defending national champion, next Saturday in the Round of 8.

Muhlenberg needed only six plays after the opening kickoff to score its first points but gave the touchdown back after turning the ball over twice in its half of the field.

From there, the defense took over, holding the Yellow Jackets' running attack, which came in averaging 249.5 yards per game, to 21 yards on 29 attempts. The visiting team did not have a run of longer than 7 yards, and had only two plays of more than 10 yards.

After scoring its touchdown with 5:49 left in the first quarter, Randolph-Macon (9-3) did not take another snap in Mule territory until the fourth quarter and finished the game with just 98 yards of total offense.

Junior Frankie Feaster led the defense with a monster game, recording four sacks among his 7½ tackles for loss – the most by an NCAA football player at any level this season. Feaster's four sacks gave him a school-record 17½ on the season.

Sophomore Nick Sirico also made history, putting a stamp on the win by returning an interception 74 yards for a touchdown for the final points of the game. Though not nearly as dramatic as his last-minute game-winning pick-six at Delaware Valley last week, it made Sirico the first Muhlenberg player to return interceptions for touchdowns in back-to-back weeks since 1947*. It was also the school-record fifth pick-six of the season by the Mules.

Sophomore Michael Hnatkowsky threw for 153 yards and three touchdown passes, breaking two school records. The 153 yards gave him 3,012 for the season, making him the first Mule to eclipse the 3,000-yard mark (the previous record was 2,998), and the three TDs gave him 30 on the season, topping the old mark of 27 that he tied last week. Hnatkowsky also went over 5,000 yards for his career in just his second season.

Sophomore James Diggs rushed for 105 yards on 17 carries for the first postseason 100-yard game by a Mule since 2007.

Hnatkowsky was 4-for-4 on the opening drive, capping it off with an 11-yard touchdown pass to junior Ryan Curtiss just 2:23 into the game.

Feaster's first sack led to a punt on the Yellow Jackets' first drive, but Muhlenberg fumbled the punt near midfield. After the defense held and forced another punt, Randolph-Macon got the ball back on an interception two plays later.

A pass interference penalty in the end zone on third down put the ball on the 2, and the Yellow Jackets scored on the next play, although freshman John Washington blocked the extra point to keep the Mules in the lead.

Muhlenberg responded with a 12-play scoring drive that consisted of all runs – eight by junior Mark Riggio, three by Diggs and one by senior Josiah Lawrence-Wright, who reversed field for an 18-yard pickup to the 2-yard line. Diggs scored his 12th touchdown of the season on the next play.

Late in the second quarter, the snap on third-and-goal went high, but Hnatkowsky retreated and picked up the ball on one hop, then scrambled before finding sophomore Nick Ugarte for a 3-yard touchdown pass to make it 21-6.

Junior Max Kirin caught his 10th touchdown pass of the season to cap Muhlenberg's opening drive of the second half.

The win, combined with Johns Hopkins' 58-27 defeat of Frostburg State, gave the Centennial Conference two teams in the quarterfinals. Prior to 2018, the CC had only sent two teams to the quarters in its entire history.
 
Kyle Wilczynski scored touchdowns on interception returns in back-to-back games in 2015, but the Mules had their bye in between the two games so it was not in back-to-back weeks.

Sep. 19: All times Eastern
Final
Manchester 52, at Defiance 21
@ Defiance, Ohio
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Sep. 20: All times Eastern
Final
at Johns Hopkins 41, Moravian 0
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Final
at St. Lawrence 32, Morrisville State 22
Final
MIT 13, at Becker 6
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Sep. 21: All times Eastern
Final
Alfred State 27, at Rochester 21
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Final
Brockport 55, at Buffalo State 22
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Final
DePauw 21, at Kenyon 7
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Final
Massachusetts Maritime 42, at Maine Maritime 21
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Salve Regina 62, at Dean 35
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at Hobart 20, Rowan 17
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at St. John Fisher 40, TCNJ 16
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Juniata 44, at Ursinus 38
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Final
at Framingham State 48, Westfield State 21
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Wesley 20, at Endicott 17
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Amherst 24, at Colby 10
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at Methodist 30, Catholic 14
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Middlebury 28, at Bates 0
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Final
at Merchant Marine 45, SUNY-Maritime 0
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Final
at Trinity (Conn.) 61, Bowdoin 7
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Final
at Union 27, Springfield 17
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at Apprentice 49, Gallaudet 13
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Final
Hanover 31, at Maryville (Tenn.) 10
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at Trine 21, Concordia (Wis.) 16
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1:00 PM
St. Vincent at Westminster (Pa.)
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Final
Wesleyan 28, at Hamilton 10
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at Hope 34, Aurora 32
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at Carnegie Mellon 20, Washington and Jefferson 13
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at Washington and Lee 52, Guilford 14
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WPI 31, at Husson 12
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at Albion 56, Eureka 41
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Averett 35, at Ferrum 12
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at Southern Virginia 29, Hampden-Sydney 17
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at Randolph-Macon 20, Emory and Henry 17
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at Franklin and Marshall 34, McDaniel 17
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at Plymouth State 34, Worcester State 9
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Final
at Ithaca 27, Alfred 9
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Final - OT
Wilkes 24, at Lycoming 17
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1:00 PM
Oberlin at Ohio Wesleyan
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Final - OT
at Muhlenberg 24, Susquehanna 17
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1:00 PM
Wabash at Allegheny
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Final
at Delaware Valley 28, Stevenson 21
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at Widener 48, FDU-Florham 10
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at Lebanon Valley 31, Alvernia 12
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Final
Dickinson 56, at Gettysburg 20
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Lakeland 28, at Kalamazoo 7
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Final
Concordia-Chicago 23, at Finlandia 12
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1:00 PM
Greenville at Northwestern (Minn.)
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Final
at UW-Oshkosh 44, Huntingdon 14
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Final
MacMurray 38, at Minnesota-Morris 14
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1:00 PM
Carroll at Carthage
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Final
Westminster (Mo.) 35, at Iowa Wesleyan 7
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at Williams 44, Tufts 8
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at Mount Union 45, Baldwin Wallace 7
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Final
Franklin 34, at Bluffton 19
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at Mount St. Joseph 34, Anderson 7
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1:30 PM
Bethany at Waynesburg
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John Carroll 14, at Otterbein 7
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Nichols 37, at Anna Maria 20
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at Norwich 17, Coast Guard 14
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at Wilmington 42, Ohio Northern 38
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at Alma 51, Rockford 16
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Final
at UW-Platteville 41, Thomas More 10
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at St. Olaf 36, Carleton 19
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at St. John's 33, Gustavus Adolphus 21
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at Concordia-Moorhead 48, Augsburg 0
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2:00 PM
Nebraska Wesleyan at Buena Vista
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Hardin-Simmons 63, at Howard Payne 20
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at Austin 20, Centre 13
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2:00 PM
Elmhurst at Augustana
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2:00 PM
Coe at Loras
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2:00 PM
Wartburg at Luther
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2:00 PM
Millikin at North Park
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4th - 15:00
21 UW-Whitewater
20 St. Xavier
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Final
at Lewis and Clark 44, Whittier 41
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St. Thomas 74, at Hamline 14
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2:30 PM
King's at Hartwick
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Final
at University of New England 31, Castleton 21
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at Olivet 21, Benedictine 6
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Final - 2OT
at Adrian 32, Wisconsin Lutheran 29
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3:00 PM
Sul Ross State at McMurry
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3:00 PM
UW-La Crosse at Dickinson St.
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Final
at Waldorf 27, UW-River Falls 24
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at Willamette 34, Occidental 31
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Western Connecticut 42, at Bridgewater State 33
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at Claremont-Mudd-Scripps 24, Pacific Lutheran 17
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at Puget Sound 28, La Verne 24
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03:29 - 4th
13 Fitchburg State
37 Mass-Dartmouth
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4th - 02:00
12 Wooster
14 Wittenberg
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5:00 PM
UW-Stevens Point at Dakota St.
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17 Utica
14 RPI
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6:00 PM
Western New England at Stetson
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Half
27 North Central (Ill.)
13 Washington U.
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7:00 PM
Muskingum at Marietta
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1st - 05:11
0 Hiram
14 Denison
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7:00 PM
Bridgewater at Shenandoah
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1st - 05:04
3 Christopher Newport
0 Brevard
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1st - 04:11
0 Capital
7 Heidelberg
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1st - 05:35
7 Grove City
7 Case Western Reserve
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7:00 PM
Thiel at Geneva
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7:00 PM
Crown at St. Scholastica
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1:48 1st Q
7 Berry
0 Trinity (Texas)
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7:00 PM
Simpson at Dubuque
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1st - 03:23
7 Birmingham-Southern
0 Sewanee
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7:00 PM
Texas Lutheran at East Texas Baptist
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3:55 1st
7 Illinois Wesleyan
0 Wheaton (Ill.)
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1st - 07:30
0 Louisiana College
9 Southwestern
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7:00 PM
Belhaven at Mary Hardin-Baylor
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8:00 PM
Rhodes at Millsaps
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10:00 PM
Pomona-Pitzer at George Fox
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10:00 PM
Linfield at Redlands
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10:00 PM
Whitworth at Chapman
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10:00 PM
Pacific at Cal Lutheran
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Sep. 5: All times Eastern
Final
Johns Hopkins 17, at Randolph-Macon 12
Video Box Score Recap Recap
Sep. 6: All times Eastern
Final
Salisbury 63, at Albright 28
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Final
Delaware Valley 37, at Kean 7
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Sep. 7: All times Eastern
Final
North Central (Ill.) 43, at Christopher Newport 13
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Final
Wesley 69, at Franklin Pierce 0
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Final
at Muhlenberg 45, TCNJ 26
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Ithaca 66, at St. Vincent 28
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Final
at Susquehanna 42, Lycoming 26
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Final
at Washington and Jefferson 16, Wittenberg 8
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Final
at John Carroll 21, UW-Stevens Point 7
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Centre 45, at Hanover 31
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Final
Berry 31, at Maryville (Tenn.) 10
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at Bethel 42, Simpson 10
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Wheaton (Ill.) 38, at Monmouth 0
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St. John's 14, at UW-Stout 7
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Final - OT
at UW-La Crosse 21, Concordia-Moorhead 14
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Final
Whitworth 50, at La Verne 24
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Final
at St. Thomas 69, Trinity International 3
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Final
at UW-Whitewater 42, Dubuque 7
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Final
Mount Union 66, at Rose-Hulman 14
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Final
Hardin-Simmons 64, at Sul Ross State 0
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Final
Washington U. 43, at Chicago 7
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