Since a 40-14 week 2 win over Knox College, the Carlton Knights have found themselves on the losing end of games the last seven contests. No more. The Knights jumped out to a 13-0 lead in the first quarter against Hamline University, and then held on for a 13-6 win in snowy conditions in St. Paul.
The Knights got on the scoreboard on their second possession of the game when QB Zach Creighton scored from 6-yards out to make it 6-0. An earlier pass from Creighton to Mike Frett went for 16-yards, setting up a first and goal at the 9-yard line. Two plays later Creighton scored staking his team to a lead.
On the ensuing kickoff, Pat Dale forced a fumble that he recovered, giving his offense back the ball at the Hamline 38. On the first play of the drive RB Chris madden lost 2-yards, and Creighton followed that up with a 5-yard keeper that made it third and 7. Needing a big play, the QB dumped the ball off to Madden who took it all the way for the 35-yard touchdown and a 13-0 lead. That was all the scoring the team would get, and frankly all they would need.
The Pipers offense was being held in check. Their first drive moved them 70-yards to the Carleton 20, but Zach Heinrich’s intercepted the Tim Bona pass was and returned it 39-yards. Creighton scored 7-plays later.
Hamline’s next drive actually went backwards, losing nine yards on a three-n-out series. That was followed up by a 5-play possession before they were forced to punt again. Finally on their last possession before the half they would get on the board.
Starting from their own 28-yard line, QB Tim Bona led the Pipers on a 15-play, 72-yard drive that took 4:17 off of the clock. Bona passed the ball 10 times on the possession, completing six, and his last pass was a 10-yarder to Hoyfal Adam for the touchdown. The point after attempt was no good, and the teams went into the half with the score 13-6.
Following the intermission the defenses took over. The Pipers took the first possession after half and moved 78-yards in 18-plays, but on a fourth and goal play from the 8-yard line Bona’s pass was defended well by Pat Dale and the drive came to an end.
That started a series of six straight possessions where the teams punted. On the Knights fourth drive of the half they finally started to have some success, moving 40-yards on 12-plays. They were attempting to run out the clock to seal the victory, and so on fourth and 6 from the Hamline 23 they opted to go for it rather than take the risk of a field goal under snowy conditions. Creighton’s pass fell incomplete to Madden, and the Pipers had one last chance.
There was just 1:25 left on the clock, and Hamline had to move 77-yards to tie the score. Bona’s first pass was incomplete to Duncan, then he hit a short pass to Adam to make it third and four. Two chances left and Bona looked for Adam on both plays to try to keep the drive alive. Neither pass found their mark and the Knights ran out the last 38 seconds for their second win of the year.
Creighton struggled passing for most of the day, going 4-13 for 66 yards, but with the big 35-yard touchdown pass to Madden. He also had 21-carries for 137-yards and a score. Bona was 18-34 on the afternoon for 122-yards, a touchdown and an interception. Duncan had 29-carries for 131-yards for Hamline.
The two teams combined for just 505 yards of total offense, only 188 through the air. Alexander Polk made 11 tackles for Carleton and Jonny Nguyen had 13 for the Pipers
Both teams have completed their seasons. The Hamline Pipers fell to 4-6 while the Carleton Knights finished 2-8.
By Robert Pannier