EAST STROUDSBURG, Pa. –Ohio Dominican's football team jumped to a 31-0 lead and scored a 48-35 victory at East Stroudsburg on a cold, rainy afternoon in the Poconos on Saturday.
ODU, ranked No. 8 in Super Region One, improved to 7-2 on the season, marking the eighth straight year the Panthers have won at least seven games in a season.
The Panthers racked up 483 yards of offense in the game and had limited the Warriors to just 161 yards at halftime. All of ESU's points came in the final 18 minutes of the contest.
Junior EJ Colson (Middletown, Ohio) tallied four touchdowns (three rushing, one receiving) as he ran for 98 yards. Freshman Evan Ernst (Mason, Ohio) completed 27-of-38 passes for 282 yards and two touchdowns while junior David Turner (Fort Wayne, Ind.) caught 11 passes for 119 yards.
Sophomore Dauson Dales (Defiance, Ohio) led the defense with 10 tackles, recording 1.5 sacks. Senior Brian Hunter (Mayfield, Ohio) made seven tackles with two sacks, junior Camren Moore (New Carlisle, Ohio) added nine tackles and senior Ross Thompson (Delphos, Ohio) finished with eight stops and a fumble recovery. Senior Tawain Gordon (Pickerington, Ohio) made seven tackles, broke up two passes and forced a fumble as well.
It was Gordon's hit on ESU's tight end that got the scoring started for the Panthers, as he jarred the ball free into the air that was recovered by Thompson on the Warrior 25. Four plays later, sophomore Devanaire Conliffe (Willoughby, Ohio) scored from four yards out to give ODU a 7-0 lead with six minutes to play in the opening quarter.
ODU's special teams had a big play to start the second quarter as freshman Jared Wilson (Cleveland Heights, Ohio) blocked a punt that was picked up classmate Shomari Williams (North Ridgeville, Ohio) at the ESU 40. A 31 yard completion to Turner would set up Colson's one yard TD run to make it 14-0 less than three minutes into the period.
Later in the quarter, the Panthers used an eight play, 88 yard drive to extend the lead. Sophomore Fred Pitts (Huber Heights, Ohio) started the drive with a 45 yard run, senior Cory Contini (Dover, Ohio) caught a 23 yard pass, and Ernst kept it himself on an option around the left edge at the goal line for the score as the Panthers would take that 21-0 lead into the locker room.
Sophomore Jed Quackenbush (Newark, Ohio) hit a 31 yard field goal in the third quarter and Colson's 15 yard TD run with 5:52 in the period bumped the lead to 31-0.
Quackenbush then hit a career-long 39 yarder early in the fourth that made the score 34-7 and Colson caught a 12 yard TD pass that kept the Panthers in front 41-14 with 7:05 left. ESU recovered two onside kicks and scored three TDs in just over three minutes later in the quarter, but Colson's 47 yard TD put the game out of reach with 2:38 to play.
Ohio Dominican returns home to play host to Kentucky Wesleyan at noon on Saturday.
Contact: Scott Miles