Tiger turnovers spell end to win streak; Albion scores 24 straight to win
GREENCASTLE, IND.- It wouldn't be overstating things to say that this was a big game for the DePauw Tiger football team. A win in this game would be a huge step forward for the Tigers not to mention a momentum-builder entering the conference portion of the season.
For nearly three quarters the Tigers looked poised for a victory. They just scored on their first possession of the second half to go ahead 10-0. The Britons had marched up and down the field in the first half and totaled over 200 yards of offense, but hadn't scored. That is until their first series of the second half. The visitors used 10 plays and covered 80 yards with the final 10 coming on a Joe Pesci to Clay Crooks touchdown pass.
After picking up a first down on their next series, the Tigers coughed up the ball when quarterback Bernie Haskins was hit by Michael Rennick and Kenneth Dixon pounced on the pigskin. Seven plays later Brandon O'Connell booted a 39-yard field goal to knot the score at 10-10 with 2:32 left in the third.
Albion missed a 39-yard field goal on its next series and the Tigers started to take advantage as they drove to the Albion 40 before Neil Johnson picked off a Haskins' pass and returned it to the Britons' 46. Nine plays later Dan VanderHart scored from one yard for the lead.
Haskins was picked off on the sixth play of the next drive and the Britons used eight plays to score with John Stadelman making a nice grab of Pesci's pass at the 2:24 mark of the fourth to lead 24-10.
What had looked so promising turned dismal in a hurry as Albion converted all three of the Tigers' second half turnovers into scores totaling 17 points.
The Tigers took the early lead in the game on a career-best 47-yard field goal from Jason Gardner at the end of the Tigers' first drive. The Tigers' first series of the second half ended with Johnathon Stigall's two-yard run and gave the Old Gold the 10-0 advantage.
Albion finished with 428 yards of offense and a punishing 263 on the ground behind Virgil Petty's 111 and Chris Hohlbein's 81. Pesci completed 16 of 29 passes for 165 yards.
The Tigers finished with 301 yards of offense including 108 on the ground led by Haskins' 54. Haskins was 19 of 40 with a career-high three interceptions and no touchdowns.
Jon Secrest led the Tigers with 15 tackles with Michael Lewis and Josh Johnson adding 12 and 11, respectively. Adam Rojeski and Pat Slone each had eight tackles for Albion.
DePauw is 2-1 on the season, while Albion improved to 2-1. The loss also snapped the Tigers' nine-game winning streak. The Tigers must regroup as they begin defense of their Indiana Collegiate Athletic Conference title with a game at Anderson.