RICHMOND, IND. – Manchester University turned to a strong balance in its rushing and passing attacks to earn a 42-13 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference win at Earlham College Saturday, Oct. 19.
The Spartans, surging to 2-5 overall and 2-3 in HCAC action, rushed for 180 yards and threw for 166 more as part of a 346-yard offensive attack. Senior quarterback Nick Williams (Fort Wayne, Ind.) proved strong on each front, throwing for all 166 and rushing for 69, while senior running back Joe Hunter (Rushville, Ind.) topped the rushing charge behind 78 yards on 21 carries.
MU didn't wait long to crash their half of the scoreboard at Darrell Beadle Stadium. A 13-play, 63-yard drive took up nearly five minutes in the first period, as junior running back Austin Adams (Dowagiac, Mich.) bulled in from three yards out. After the home-standing Quakers (1-5 overall, 0-4 HCAC) were stopped on a fourth-down attempt in MU's end, the Spartan offense picked up right where it left off on its opening possession, going 54 yards in seven plays with Williams finding freshman wide receiver Dakota Nelson (Fairland, Ind.) on a 26-yard scoring strike. Nelson wasn't done piling up first half points, busting a 68-yard punt return to the house to give the Black and Gold a 21-3 halftime advantage.
The roll continued in the second half. On back-to-back opportunities, the visitors struck pay dirt. A nine-play, 67-yard march was their first chance with Williams diving in from two yards out for a score. After the Black and Gold defense held Earlham inside its on 40-yard line on a fourth down attempt, MU went 37 yards in six plays, as sophomore quarterback Logan Haston (Avon, Ind.) ran it in from five yards out. Manchester University put up one more touchdown in the final frame with Williams and Hunter connecting on a 38-yard scoring play.
MU's defense proved active in the face of a high-flying Quaker offense. EC did manage 293 yards passing but was hobbled by three fumbles and two interceptions. Senior linebacker Zach Dashner (South Bend, Ind.) continued to show a nose for the football with a fumble recovery and interception, while sophomore defensive back Taylor Anglemeyer (Wakarusa, Ind.) picked off another pass and broke up two other attempts, and senior defensive lineman Dan Hunter (Monroeville, Ind.) recovered a fumble. Senior linebacker Dylin Kennedy (North Manchester, Ind.) was reliable yet again in the tackle statistics with nine all of which were solo.
The Black and Gold look to continue their recent hot streak Saturday, Oct. 26, as Mt. St. Joseph College of Ohio visits Carl W. Burt Memorial Field for a 1:30 p.m. kickoff.
NOTES: The win increased Manchester University's string in the series to four straight … Hunter's rushing effort was a single-game career best for the senior … Nelson's three-reception, 44-yard afternoon marked the fourth time this season he's been over 40 yards receiving … The victory moved the Spartans into sixth on the conference standings, just a half-game out of the top five.