Career Day Runs Hawks Football Past Blue Bears
MURFREESBORO, N.C. – The Chowan Football team picked up their first win of the season behind a strong running attack and stellar defensive play on their way to a 25-12 victory against CIAA foe Livingstone on Saturday evening.
FINAL | Chowan 25, Livingstone 12
RECORDS | Chowan 1-3 (1-0), Livingstone 0-4 (0-1)
LOCATION | Murfreesboro, N.C. (Garrison Stadium)
INSIDE THE BOXSCORE
Michael Offutt Jr. produced a school-record 346 all-purpose yards. Offutt Jr. tallied the sixth most yards on the ground with 189 yards on 24 carries. The sophomore running back added 32 receiving yards, 37 kick return yards and 88 punt return yards.
Bryce Witt connected on 10-28 passing for 203 yards and two scores. Ra'Cee Lucas found pay-dirt twice on his only two receptions of the night. Witt also found the endzone on the ground on a six-yard scamper.
Freshman linebacker, Dre Terry, paced the Hawks with 13 tackles. Nate Wyche added two sacks and two forced fumbles on the evening. Wyche sits one sack behind program leader, TJ Batchelor, with 20 career sacks.
The defense harassed the Blue Bears quarterbacks dropping them for eight sacks.
Connor Killeen connected on two field goals and pinned the Blue Bears inside the 10, twice.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Livingstone won the toss and elected to receive the ball. Chowan forced a three-and-out to start the contest. The Blue Bear punter shanked the punt and gave the Hawks great field position in plus territory on the LC44.
Michael Offutt picked up 38 yards on a 7-yd rush and a 31-yd swing pass taking the ball down to the 6-yd line. Bryce Witt found the endzone on a 6-yd scamper for the 7-0 lead just 3:12 into the contest.
The Chowan defense kept the Blue Bears contained on the following drive allowing one first down on the drive. Bryce Witt would be picked off and taken back the other way for a 34-yd pick six. The Hawks defense would thwart the two-point conversion try keeping the Hawks ahead 7-6.
The Hawks moved the ball down the field on the ensuing drive picking up three first downs on the drive. The drive stalled at the LC 16 as a holding penalty killed the momentum. Connor Killeen connected on a 33-yd field goal to give the Hawks a 10-6 lead with 5:16 remaining in the opening quarter.
Livingstone methodically moved the ball down the field as a 25-yd pass aided the drive down the field. The Blue Bears would take their only lead of the contest on a 7-yd touchdown run to put Livingstone up 12-10.
The second quarter was not as fruitful as the opening stanza as neither team found the endzone during the 15 minutes of play.
The opening drive for the Blue Bears in the quarter started at the Chowan 40-yd line. LC moved the ball to the CU 20 but the Hawks defense stayed strong forcing a turnover on downs.
Chowan took the momentum into their next drive as Bryce Witt connected on a 42-yd strike to Paul Gooden. Two short completions forced a field goal attempt for the Hawks. Connor Killeen would push the 35-yd attempt just left.
On the next possession for the Hawks, the Blue Bears defense forced an interception in the redzone. Nate Wycheforced a fumble but was quickly recovered by the Blue Bears on the following possession. A sack by Tyler Bembryon fourth down gave the Hawks the ball back with less than minute remaining in the quarter.
Livingstone led the Hawks 12-10 heading into the locker room.
On the opening drive of the second half, Michael Offutt Jr. provided a spark for the Hawks' offense with a 36-yd rush. Two plays later, Bryce Witt found Ra'Cee Lucas in the east endzone for the 30-yd touchdown. Chowan was stopped on the two-point conversion as the Hawks led 16-12.
Michael Offutt Jr. ran wild in the third quarter picking up 91 yards on nine carries in the quarter.
Livingstone had to punt on the opening drive of the fourth quarter after five plays. Michael Offutt Jr. gave the Hawks great field position as Offutt Jr.'s punt return of 64 yards put the Hawks in the redzone.
Bryce Witt found Ra'Cee Lucas slanting across the field for the 17-yd score. CU led 22-12 after the PAT was blocked.
Nate Wyche gave the Hawks the ball back on a strip sack on the next possession. Chowan stalled on the drive as Livingstone forced the Hawks to kick a field goal. Connor Killeen connected on a 36-yd attempt to put Chowan up 25-12 with 7:27 remaining in the contest.
The Chowan defense kept the Blue Bears offense at-bay with an interception by Marcus Devin and forcing a turnover on downs after a Nate Wyche sack on fourth down.
Chowan would run the clock out with the victory formation.
Chowan heads back on the road as the Hawks travel to Charlotte, N.C. to face the winless Golden Bulls of Johnson C. Smith in CIAA cross-over play on September 30. Kick-off is at 1pm.