Tartans Late Run Comes Up Short Against Thiel

Tartans Late Run Comes Up Short Against Thiel

(PITTSBURGH, Pa.) – The Carnegie Mellon University football team hosted the Tomcats of Thiel College on Saturday, November 1 and dropped a 40-27 decision in Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) play.   The Tartans are now 3-5, 3-5 while Thiel is also 3-5 overall and 2-4 in PAC play.

After a scoreless first quarter, Thiel put together a 14-play, 80-yard drive that was capped off with a Ryan Radke 23-yard touchdown run on fourth down.  The extra-point sailed through to make the score 7-0 with 13:25 to play in the half.  Later in the second quarter, Radke tossed an 8-yard touchdown to Marcus Johnson.  Tartan junior Ryan Aitken (Alexandria, Va./West Potomac) blocked the point after to leave the score 13-0 Tomcats with 2:52 on the clock in the second quarter.  
 
Carnegie Mellon answered on its next possession with a nine-play, 64-yard scoring drive to cut into the Tomcats lead.  Freshman running back Sam Benger (Hingham, Mass.) capped the drive off with a 1-yard run with 27 seconds showing on the clock.  Freshman placekicker Tyler Kohman's (Pataskala, Ohio/Columbus Academy) extra-point made the score 13-7 at the break.
 
On the Tomcats first drive of the second half, the tandem of Radke and Johnson connected for their second touchdown of the game.  This time the score was a 53-yard strike to extend the visitor's lead to 20-7.  Later in the quarter the two hooked up once again for a 44-yard touchdown. The extra-point hit the left upright to leave the score 26-7.  Four plays into the fourth quarter, Rich Smallwood made the score 33-7 with a 1-yard touchdown run.

With eight minutes to play in the contest junior quarterback Andrew Hearon (Tulsa, Okla./Metro Christian Academy) connected with senior Shae Sealey (Lithia Springs, Ga./Douglas County) for a 13-yard Tartan touchdown pass.  The extra-point was no good to make the score 33-13.  On the ensuing kickoff, the Tartans recovered the onside kick which led to another Hearon touchdown strike.  The junior's 30-yard pass to fellow junior Max Reinertsen (Esko, Minn.) pulled the Tartans to within two scores at 33-20 with five minutes remaining.

Thiel was able to put the game out of reach on its next drive, as the Tomcats marched 55 yards in nine plays which resulted in Radke's second rushing touchdown of the game.  Carnegie Mellon didn't go down without a fight.  With nine seconds remaining, Reinertsen caught his second touchdown, this time from junior quarterback Evan Englert (Dansville N.Y./Wayland-Cohocton) in the back corner of the end zone to end the scoring at 40-27.

In the turnover free game, the Tomcats outgained the Tartans 475-299.  Hearon threw a career-high 40 passes while also completing a career-best 24 for 244 yards and two touchdowns.  Reinertsen turned in a career day with nine catches for 119 yards and two scores to lead the Tartans receivers.  Benger added a career-high six receptions for 46 yards.  

For the second straight game, junior linebacker Nico Comsa (Connellsville, Pa.) and senior linebacker Eric Myers (Bridgeville, Pa./South Fayette) led the Tartans in tackles.  Comsa recorded 11 while Myers added 10 in the setback.

Radke competed 15-of-24 passes for 256 yards and three touchdowns.  The sophomore signal caller also led the Tomcats with 114 yards rushing and two scores. Wes Schmidt totaled a game-high 13 tackles with 11 solo stops.

Carnegie Mellon returns to the gridiron on Saturday, November 8 when they travel to the Windy City to play University of Chicago.  Kick for the University Athletic Association contest is slated for 12:00 p.m. CST.