Tradition • Character • Service

Tradition • Character • Service

Saturday, October 06, 2012

Halloween comes early in 24-21 Hillsdale loss at Wayne State #d2fb

What a nightmare! It was like Halloween decided to come 25 days early for Hillsdale College as Wayne State jumped out to a 17-0 lead thanks to all kinds of Hillsdale errors.

After the Warriors marched down the field to go up 7-0 it looked like Hillsdale would do the same. Unfortunately Anthony Mifsud forced a pass into the corner of the Wayne State 18 yard line only to see it returned 82 yards for a score. It was eerie deja vu from the last time Hillsdale visited Adams Field. A pick six in 2010 ended up being the difference points-wise that year.

On the next possession it appeared like the Chargers had drawn within a score but a beautiful scoring strike from Mifsud to Andrew Mott was called back on an ineligible receiver down field. Another pass for a first down on the drive was also negated due to a penalty and the Chargers were flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct on the drive as well.

It could have been worse if the defense didn't begin the turn the tide. Wayne peeled off a big run but had to settle for a field goal as the Chargers stiffened at the goal line to keep it 17-0 instead of 21-0.

Hillsdale would get the next two touchdowns on a 23 yard run from Anthony Mifsud and a 33 yard pass to Brett Miller. It was 17-14 at halftime with Hillsdale looking forward to starting the second half with possession.

That possession lasted two plays as a snap went over Mifsud's head and was recovered by the Warriors at the Hillsdale 12. Wayne converted easily to pull back ahead 24-14.

The Charger defense would not yield another score but Wayne State's block of Colin McGreevy's 27 yard attempt just seemed to add to the "What's going to go wrong next?" feel of the afternoon and protected the Warriors' two score lead.

Hillsdale still had life though and thanks to its defense continually making stops Mifsud would lead Hillsdale on a nifty 11 play 71 yard drive. With just over 5 minutes left to play the Chargers would get within a field goal on another Mifsud run for a score. 24-21 Wayne State.

The Hillsdale defense would give the ball back to the offense with a quick 3 and out series. The Chargers would need to go 90 yards but still had a timeout in their pocket and nearly 3 minutes of clock. Another turnover though looked like it might be the end for Hillsdale as Mifsud was sacked and coughed it up at his own 25 on first down.

All Wayne State needed was a first down essentially to ice the game. They wouldn't get it though and on 4th down Joe Snyder and Brett Pasche stopped Toney Davis to put the ball back in the offense's hands one more time with 30 seconds to play.

Two vertical attempts went over the heads of Joe Glendening and then Evan Bach. The third pass was complete but to Andrew Matt of Wayne State. With no way to stop the clock, Hillsdale watched the final seconds tick off the scoreboard signaling its third consecutive loss to Wayne State.

It was just one of those "if this one thing doesn't happen" type of games. Both teams played hard. Both defenses proved why they share several of the top categories in the GLIAC and Wayne State did what it had to do to force Hillsdale into seemingly an uncharacteristic amount of mistakes.

Joe Glendening was kept out of the endzone for the first time this year but had his first 100 yard game against Wayne State in three tries. He carried 24 times for 122 yards. He also caught two passes for 12 yards. Mifsud also got over 100 yards with his legs but when you subtract the sacks his official rushing total was 90 yards. He completed 17 of 34 passes for 199 yards and 2 interceptions. Miller had 3 catches for 66 yards and a score. Cam White caught 6 balls for 52 yards.

The defense really made this a ballgame and deserves a ton of credit. Nick Galvan had 8 tackles including 2 for loss and he broke up a pass. Pasche had 7 stops and Ben Karaba had 6. They held Wayne State to just 4 of 13 on third down and turned away 2 fourth down tries. wayne was limited to 287 yards of total offense while Hillsdale had over 400.

Hillsdale drops to 4-2 on the season and 4-1 in the GLIAC. They play at Ferris State next Saturday.

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