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Tigers Win Second Straight, 33-28 Over Catholic

Pat Kline

WASHINGTON, D.C.-The Hampden-Sydney Tigers claimed their second straight victory, scoring 27 first half points en route to a 33-28 win over the Catholic University of America in the nation's capital. With the win, the Tigers improve to 2-4 on the season and 2-1 in ODAC play; the Cardinals drop to 3-3 overall and 0-3 in the ODAC.

It was a tale of two halves, with the Tigers opening the game on fire with a 27-0 lead. Catholic, however, used the intermission to regroup and outscore the Tigers 28-6 in the second half, but the comeback attempt fell short.

The Tigers wasted no time finding the end zone, using nine plays and two and a half minutes to drive 75 yards and go up 7-0 on a ten-yard catch for Matt DeMasi (Virginia Beach, VA/Frank W. Cox).

After the Tiger defense got back-to-back three-and-outs, Alec Cobb (Jamestown, NC/Ragsdale) threw his second touchdown pass of the day, finding Owen Costello (South Riding, VA/Paul VI) for a ten-yard score.

The defense continued to dominate, forcing two more punts before the Cobb and Costello connected again – this time for a 74-yard catch and run to go up 21-0.

The Tigers tacked on one more, driving 80 yards in nine plays to go up 27-0 with just over four minutes to go in the half on a 25-yard touchdown reception from Patrick Kline (New Cumberland, PA/Trinity).

The Tigers got the ball back on a turnover-on-downs, but could not hit a 46-yard field goal with time expiring.

Catholic was not daunted coming into the third quarter, scoring on its first drive of the second half, driving 75 yards in nine plays.

The Tigers had to punt on their opening drive, and the Cardinals put up seven more on a Nick Esposito six-yard run.

The Cardinals kept coming, forcing a third-straight punt and scoring on a nine-yard reception from Billy Smith to cut the Tiger lead to 27-21 with five minutes to go in the third quarter.

The Tigers, however, were able to stop the run on their next drive, using over four minutes of clock on 11 plays to drive 68 yards. The drive was capped off by a five-yard touchdown run from Mike DeMasi (Virginia Beach, VA/Frank W. Cox).

After traded punts to start the fourth quarter, Catholic struck again, on a 53-yard run from Esposito to make it a five point game at 33-28 with 12 minutes to play.

Each offense began to falter, with three straight turnovers – two for the Tigers and one for the Cardinals. Catholic later began a drive with just under four minutes to go and drove into Tiger territory looking for the lead. Facing a fourth-and-16 on the Hampden-Sydney 30-yard line, Alejandro Ros hit Greg Holodak but just for 13 yards, giving the ball back to the Tigers with just over a minute to play.

The Tigers were able to run out the clock for their second straight win.

On the day, the Tigers had their best offensive output of the season at 567 yards with 379 passing and 188 rushing. Cobb was 30-of-44 for 379 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions. Costello caught seven passes for 154 yards and two touchdowns. Mike DeMasi had eight catches for 50 yards while also leading the run game with 31 carries, 116 yards, and a touchdown.

Kline had a strong outing with four catches for 81 yards and a touchdown.

Defensively, the Tigers allowed 423 yards of offense on 224 passing and 199 rushing. Christian Wilder (Richmond, VA/Mills Godwin) led the way with nine tackles and half a sack. Mike Lepore (Suffolk, VA/Nansemond Suffolk) tallied eight stops. Tanner Ramey (Mechanicsville, VA/Atlee) recorded five tackles with a forced fumble, and Joe Everette (Mechanicsville, VA/Hanover) had three stops and a fumble recovery.

The Tigers remain on the road and will face the Generals of Washington & Lee next Saturday, October 22. Kickoff is set for 1:00 PM.  

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