NEW CONCORD — Ohio Northern survived four turnovers and a missed field goal with 24 seconds left to defeat Muskingum 7-6 on Saturday and earn an Ohio Athletic Conference football victory.
The Polar Bears improved to 5-2 overall, 4-2 in the OAC.
Muskingum (1-6, 0-6) drove 86 yards in 11 plays to the ONU 5 with less than 3 minutes remaining, but Jarett Patton missed the chip shot wide right.
ONU’s Christiaan Williams led all players with 168 rushing yards on 38 carries. His 2-yard touchdown tied the game with 10:23 left in the third quarter before Chase Watson’s extra point put them on top.
The Fighting Muskies scored on a 10-yard pass from Brody Hahn to Cameron Naer but the Polar Bears blocked Colton Kowalak’s extra point.
Will Freed threw for 188 yards on 16 of 28 attempts but also had three interceptions for ONU.
Malachi Noletti (74 yards) and Williams (39 yards) each caught five passes from Freed.
Defensively, Zach Schmerge backed ONU with 10 tackles while Andrew Valenti tallied nine tackles, one for loss, a forced fumble and a pass breakup.
Beavers fall to Spartans
NORTH MANCHESTER, Ind. — Bluffton and Manchester posted nearly identical offensive numbers, but three interceptions for the Beavers was enough to flip the tide as the Spartans came away with a 28-21 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference win.
Brandon Koch, who threw a 4-yard touchdown to Kais Chiles late in the third quarter for Bluffton’s (2-5, 2-3 HCAC) first and only lead of the game, completed just 15 of 39 passes for 128 yards and three interceptions.
Manchester’s (3-4, 2-3) Dillon Nelson returned one of those interceptions 70 yards for a TD midway through the first quarter to give the Spartans a 14-0 lead. Donovan Henders paced Manchester’s offense with 81 yards and two TDs on 25 carries and Cornelius Hawki scampered for 71 yards and the go-ahead score in the fourth quarter on 10 attempts.
Micah Roberson (Ada) led the receivers with 78 yards on a game-high nine receptions, while Darian Greeley bulldozed his way to 138 yards on 26 carries for Bluffton.
Tyler Showalter led the Beavers’ defense splitting a quarterback sack with Austin Hall and returning an interception 30 yards for a TD in the second quarter.
Bluffton 7 7 7 0 — 21
Manchester 14 0 6 8 — 28
MAN — Henders 4 run (Graham kick)
MAN — Nelson 70 interception return (Graham kick)
BU — Gardner 4 run (Watkins kick)
BU — Showalter 30 interception return (Watkins kick)
MAN — Henders 3 run (kick failed)
BU — Chiles 4 pass from Koch (Watkins kick)
MAN — Hawki 9 run (Bourff pass from Downard)