The Denison University defense stepped up big Saturday night to fend off a late fourth-quarter threat from Hiram College to seal a 17-12 Big Red victory in Granville, Ohio.
Denison (2-0) dominated much of the game, but a sloppy performance kept the Big Red from putting the contest out of reach.
With less than five minutes to play in the fourth quarter and a 17-7 lead, Denison had a chance to seal a win. Instead, the Big Red coughed up the ball at the goal line, and Hiram (1-1) returned the ball to the Denison 21 before ultimately settling for a field goal.
On the ensuing kickoff, with Denison expecting an onside kick, Hiram sent the ball deep, pinning Denison deep in their own territory. The Hiram defense then stuffed running back Colin Morris for a 2-yard-loss to pick up a safety, narrowing the gap to 17-12.
After giving the ball back to Hiram, the Denison defense stopped the Terriers on a desperate fourth and 15 attempt, allowing the Big Red to run out the clock.
Denison quarterback Brandon Sklenar completed 14 of 20 passes for 238 yards and a touchdown, but also threw a pair of interceptions. Morris ended the night with 67 rushing yards and a touchdown to lead the Big Red ground attack.
Also on Saturday, in Richmond, Ind., Matt Couch completed 16 of 29 passes, throwing 238 yards and a pair of touchdowns as the Quakers of Earlham College defeated the visiting Lords of Kenyon College by a 25-15 score.
Earlham (1-1) jumped to an 11-0 lead in the first quarter and never looked back. Kenyon (1-1) did close the gap to 11-8 in the second quarter and 18-15 in the fourth quarter, but could not manage to pull any closer.
Running back Malik Reed led the Quakers’ ground game, rushing for 66 yards and a touchdown on 30 attempts. Receiver Jalen Kenner caught eight passes for 107 yards and a touchdown to lead Earlham’s receiving corps.
In Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon (1-1) defeated Allegheny College (0-2) by a 26-7 margin. Running back Troy Witt ran for 103 yards and a pair of touchdowns to lead the Carnegie Mellon offense.
In Crawfordsville, Ind., Wabash College (1-0) handily defeated visiting Hanover College (0-2) by a 69-0 margin. Running back Tyler Holmes ran for 146 yards and a pair of touchdowns to lead Wabash.
In St. Louis, Washington University (1-1) squeaked out a double overtime victory over visiting Rhodes College (1-1) by a 10-7 score. Kicker Alex Hallwachs’ 27-yard field goal in the second overtime completed a come-from-behind win for Washington.
In Jackson, Miss., Millsaps College (2-0) held off a late rally to defeat LaGrange College (0-2) by a 28-24 score. Quarterback Zak Thrasher threw for 199 yards and three touchdowns while running back Mike Barthelemy ran for 138 yards and a touchdown to lead the Millsaps offense.
In Montclair, N.J., Montclair State University (1-1) escaped with a 17-16 victory over visiting Salve Regina University (1-1). Salve Regina gained 255 offensive yards on 93 plays while keeping Montclair State to 111 total offensive yards on 47 plays.
In Glassboro, N.J., Rowan University (1-1) knocked off visiting Framingham State University (1-1) by a 29-19 margin. Framingham State pulled ahead 19-14 in the fourth quarter, but a pair of fourth-quarter touchdown passes from quarterback Paul Hamersma led Rowan to victory.
Note: Stats and game recaps were compiled from information provided by the aforementioned universities’ athletic departments.