ANGOLA, IN - The Trine University football team improved to 2-0 for the season with a 37-0 shutout against Manchester University in the home opener at Fred Zollner Stadium in Angola, IN.
The Thunder recorded over 400 yards of total offense with 318 yards rushing, and held the Spartans to 276 total yards.
Junior Devonte Jones led all rushers with 89 yards in 13 attempts (6.8 yards per carry) and scored twice on runs of 43 and 11 yards. Freshman Jordan Watson was second with 47 yards (6.7 ypc.) and the duo of sophomore Jaylyn Williams and freshman Nicholas Christiano both finished with 40 yards.
Sophomore quarterback Alex Price completed 12-of-19 passes for 106 yards.
Sophomore wide receiver Kyran Pearson led the team in receptions with three for 37 yards. Fellow sophomore Brandon Kline led the team in receiving yards with 38 in two catches.
On defense, junior Tony Nikodemski had a team-high eight tackles (three solo and five assists) that included a pair of tackles for loss. Freshman Kendall Himes had a game-high two quarterback sacks for two of his three total tackles on the afternoon and also forced a fumble.
Senior kicker Ike Sheehan had a big day on special teams with three made field goals (20, 25 and 28 yards) and was also perfect on extra point attempts (four-of-four).
The only points of the opening quarter came early in the period when Trine's (2-0) first offensive possession ended in Sheehan's first successful field goal from 20 yards out at the 10:29 mark that gave the Thunder a slim 3-0 advantage.
Trine put some room between itself and Manchester (0-1) with a 17-point second quarter that saw Jones scamper for 43 yards for the first touchdown of the game on a drive that was prolonged thanks to a roughing the kicker penalty by Manchester on a Trine punt three plays prior to the Jones run. After holding Manchester to a three-and-out on its ensuing drive, the Thunder added to their lead as a result of a one-yard TD plunge by Price to cap a 10-play, 60-yard drive and extended the margin to 17-0 with just under five minutes to go in the first half. The Spartans looked to get on the board on its next possession by getting all the way to the Trine seven yard line before the door was slammed shut by Trine's Aaron Dean who intercepted a pass in the endzone and then returned it to the 50-yard line. The interception led to a 25-yard field goal by Sheehan to end the half that made it a 20-0 game at the break.
Following a scoreless third quarter, Trine tacked on 17 more points in the fourth stanza that started with Jones' second TD run of the game, this time from 11 yards ending a drive that carried over from the third quarter and inflated the lead to 27-0. After the Jones touchdown, the Trine defense forced Manchester to punt on its next drive. The kick ended up hitting the back of a Manchester player that was blocked into the path of the ball and was picked up by Trine senior Jaylin Ray at the Spartan 31-yard line who returned it to the endzone for the score with 12:45 left in the game. The final points of the game came on Trine's next possession as part of another 10-play drive that ended in a 28-yard field goal by Sheehan capping an impressive day for the Thunder with a 37-0 victory.
Trine will conclude the fall portion of the schedule with a non-conference matchup against Bluffton (Ohio) University next Saturday, Oct. 17 at Zollner Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, please contact Trine University Sports Information Director Jeff Hoedt by phone at (260) 665-4122 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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