(BETHANY, W.Va.) – The Carnegie Mellon University football team traveled to Bethany College on Saturday and fell 23-19 after outgaining the Bison 138-3 in total offense in the fourth quarter. The Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) setback moves the Tartans record to 5-2 overall and 4-2 in PAC play while Bethany is now 3-4, 3-3.
Carnegie Mellon was outgained 345-311 and turned the ball over four times while only forcing one Bison mishap. Bethany's defense tabbed 9.0 sacks for a loss of 50 yards, as the Tartans managed just one sack, coming on the first possession of the game.
Junior quarterback JD Dayhuff (Westerville, Ohio/Olentangy Orange) completed 19-of-31 passes for 167 yards. Junior Alec Oshita (Torrance, Calif./Mira Costa) led the Tartans with seven catches for 85 yards. Dayhuff led the Tartans rushing attack with 75 yards and two touchdowns.
Senior Thomas Polutchko (Southborough, Mass./Algonquin Regional) led the Tartan defense with nine tackles and two passes defended. Seniors Quinn Gaughan (Elmhurst, Ill./York Community) and Parker Mellott (Ijamsville, Md./Urbana) each totaled six tackles with Gaughan recording the Tartans lone sack.
Carlin Bason and Dom Salinetro combined for 223 yards passing for the Bison. Bason tossed for 133 yards and a score while Salinetro threw for 90 yards and two touchdowns. Hunter Klein caught six passes for 120 yards and three touchdowns.
Bethany struck first with 12:49 to play in the second quarter when Bason connected with Klein on a 23-yard touchdown. The score capped off a 12-play, 85-yard drive that took 4:41 off the clock. Tartan senior Long Tran (Harrisburg, Pa./Susquehanna Township) blocked the point after to leave the score at 6-0.
The Tartans evened the score with four minutes left in the half when Dayhuff snuck it in from 1-yard away. Two plays prior, the signal caller scampered 42 yards to set up the score. The extra-point attempt hit the left upright and bounced out to leave the score 6-6.
A fumble recovery by Bethany's Chas Blango with 21 seconds left in the first half on the Carnegie Mellon's 48-yard line led to a 44-yard field goal by Sean Cole as time expired in the half to give the home team a 9-6 lead at the break.
After holding the Tartans to a three-and-out, Bethany marched 72 yards on seven plays on its opening drive of the second half and extend the lead to 16-6. Klein caught his second touchdown pass of the game when Dom Salinetro found him in the back of the end zone on an 11-yard strike.
Bethany held the Tartans to another three-and-out on the visitor's ensuing possession. The Bison then needed three plays to push their lead to 23-6 on a third touchdown reception by Klein. This time the tandem of Salinetro and Klein connected on a 56-yard catch-and-run with 7:04 to play in the third quarter.
Junior Luke Bikulege's (Greer, S.C./St. Joseph's Catholic) 2-yard touchdown run with 12:27 to play in the game made the score 23-13. The touchdown run was setup with a pass interference call on the Bison in the end zone the play prior which placed the ball at the two-yard line.
The Tartans pulled within four points at 23-19 with 4:16 to play. Dayhuff dropped back to pass then tucked the ball and ran 41 yards for the Tartan touchdown. The extra-point was no good after the run finished off a six-play, 79-yard drive. During the drive, Dayhuff accounted for 49 yards on the ground and drew a 15-yard late hit out-of-bounds penalty.
Carnegie Mellon forced the Bison to punt after holding the home team to a three-and-out on the ensuing possession following Dayhuff's run. The Cardinal and Gray took over at the Bison 48-yard line with 2:45 to play. A pass interference in the end zone with 9.2 seconds to play put the ball on the Bethany two-yard line. The Tartans had two chances at the end zone, but came up short.
The Tartans return home on Saturday, October 26 to play Thiel College. Kick is set for 1:00 p.m. on the turf at Gesling Stadium.