Football loses 38–13 to host Case Western Reserve

At the conclusion of its second University Athletics Association (UAA) contest, Carnegie Mellon lost 38–13 in a one-sided affair to Case Western Reserve University, ranked 13th nationally, as the Spartans defended their 2007 UAA title. This loss drops the Tartans to 4–5 overall (0–2 in the UAA), and bumps the Spartans up to a 9–0 overall, (2–0 in the UAA).

The game started with Spartan sophomore Sam Coffey completing a 27-yard field goal to give the Spartans an early lead of 3–0 only 3:58 into the game. This field goal followed eight plays for 71 yards. Even after the Tartans’ defense worked to get the ball back, Spartan defensive back Bobby Bott took the ball back with a 35-yard interception return, making the first touchdown of the game. This return took the score up to 10–0, giving Case the lead with 1:43 left in the first quarter.

With 5:59 left in the first half, Case increased their lead up to 17–0 when junior quarterback Dan Whalen completed a 48-yard pass to junior wide out Tim Cowdrick to make the Spartans’ second touchdown. With time left on the clock, the Spartans seized the opportunity to make yet another touchdown as sophomore wide out Shaun Nicely caught a 29-yard pass from Whalen, who made his second touchdown pass in the game. This touchdown took the Spartan lead to 24–0 at the end of the first half.

Starting the second half, the Spartans had possession of the ball and managed to find their way to the end zone for another touchdown as junior Corey Checkan ran it 1 yard after a six play, 37-yard drive for a 31–0 lead.

Making it onto the scoreboard, Carnegie Mellon sophomore fullback Anthony Ruzga ran the ball 1 yard to score a touchdown, decreasing the gap and taking the score to 31–6. This touchdown came after a grueling 11 plays and 62 yards and a failed pass made by Tartan junior quarterback Phil Pantalone.

Responding to the Tartan touchdown, Case Western Reserve came back with another as Whalen ran 3 yards for a score of 38–6 with only 1:16 left on the clock toward the end of the third quarter.

Fighting for another touchdown, Pantalone completed a pass to sophomore wide out Jonathan Staso for a 60-yard touchdown reception, taking the score to 38–13. Although the Tartans lost this one, hopes remain high for the next game. “I’m proud of my teammates because we never quit. We have one game remaining, and we are determined to win it,” said senior fullback Ryan Phillips.

When it came to yardage, the Spartans more than doubled the Tartans’ numbers, 498–215. Whalen, completing 21 of 29 passes, led with 252 yards and two touchdowns to guide the Spartans to victory. He also had eight carries for 39 yards and one touchdown. Cowdrick claimed 105 yards with five receptions, and Nicely added another 91 yards with four catches in the game.

Ruzga headed the Tartans with 53 yards on 16 carries with one touchdown. Phillips brought in 52 yards on 12 carries. Senior Jon Scholl led Tartan defense with 18 tackles, and junior Socrates Zacharias came in with 10.

The Tartans take on the University of Chicago Maroons Saturday in Gesling Stadium at noon.