ANDERSON, IND. - Manchester University's football team brought home the Bronze Ball trophy after a 35-6 victory over Anderson University on Saturday, Nov. 10. It's the program's eighth-straight victory over the Ravens.
Donovan Henderson, Jr. (Hollywood, Fla.) continued his season of success after breaking the school record for single season rushing yards. The junior surpassed the record by 84 yards, setting the new record at 1,268. The previous record was held by Hunter Hardee during the 2015 season. Manchester started early with a touchdown from junior play caller Austin Roberts (Indianapolis, Ind.), after he rushed 20 yards into the end zone with three minutes left in the first quarter. Freshman kicker Andrew Kibler (Coral Gables, Fla.) followed with a good PAT, which was his first-of-five on the day. Henderson, Jr. began his memorable game with his own score with 41 seconds left in the first quarter, as the running back scored his first-of-three touchdowns with a five yard rush. Shortly into the final 15 minutes of the half, Henderson, Jr. scored his second touchdown of the day with a 12 yard rush. During the second half, the Spartans would score two more times before claiming the Bronze Ball trophy. With a minute to go in the third quarter, senior wide receiver Nate Tesmer (Greencastle, Ind.), found senior tight end Tristan Chester (Charlestown, Ind.) for a 28 yard pass, which resulted in another Black and Gold touchdown. Anderson struck for their first and only time in the last 15 minutes of the game, when Reggie Lipscomb rushed 33 yards to put Anderson on the board. After the Raven's score, Manchester lead 28-6 until Henderson, Jr. completed his record-breaking day with another touchdown. The junior rushed one yard with seven minutes left in the game to finalize the score, 35-6.
Henderson, Jr. ended the day with 166 rushing yards on 33 attempts and three touchdowns. Roberts joined Henderson, Jr. offensively by adding 59 passing, 50 rushing yards, and a score. Rounding up the scoring plays was Chester, whom had 45 total receiving yards and a score. Defensively, junior Justin Thomas (Lowell, Ind.) led the Spartans with 12 tackles and a forced fumble. Joining Thomas with five-or-more tackles were senior safety Dillon Nelson (Fairland, Ind.) (11); sophomore defensive back Nick Tillman (Lawrenceburg, Ind.) (eight); senior defensive lineman Jacob Cooper (Fairland, Ind.) (seven); and senior Garrett Walker (Valparasio, Ind.), junior De'Lon Barnes (Los Angeles, Calif.), and sophomore Conner Sherwin (Pierceton, Ind.), all had five tackles each. Walker registered two sacks, while Nelson and Tillman had one a piece. Rounding up the defense was senior Austin Coughlin (Fairland, Ind.) and Nelson with one interception each. Kibler ended his kicking day with five points by making all five PAT attempts.
The Bronze Ball game concludes the 2018 football season for the Spartans. Manchester finished 4-6 overall, and 4-4 in league play.