Sports

Tartan football opens the season at .500

Senior fullback Chris Garcia trucks through the Allegheny College defensive line. (credit: Celia Ludwinski/Operations Manager) Senior fullback Chris Garcia trucks through the Allegheny College defensive line. (credit: Celia Ludwinski/Operations Manager) Sophomore quarterback Rob Kalkstein heaves a pass under pressure. (credit: Celia Ludwinski/Operations Manager) Sophomore quarterback Rob Kalkstein heaves a pass under pressure. (credit: Celia Ludwinski/Operations Manager)

The Carnegie Mellon University football team is off to an even start after defeating Grove City College last weekend and losing to Allegheny College this past Saturday. The Tartans beat Grove City 21–19 and lost to Allegheny 33–13.

Against the Grove City Wolverines, Carnegie Mellon was led by a strong running attack spearheaded by juniors Patrick Blanks and Jake Nardone and senior Chris Garcia. Blanks rushed for 126 yards on 17 carries, Nardone tallied 84 yards on 13 attempts and Garcia had 47 yards on 13 rushes. Blanks scored two touchdowns and Nardone had one.

The Tartan defense was also solid, limiting Grove City to 19 points. Sophomores Rob Winkleman and Jack Butler and junior Nick Karabin led Carnegie Mellon on this side of the ball with nine, eight, and eight tackles, respectively. Those totals were career highs for Winkleman and Butler.

After that impressive win, the Tartans faltered this past Saturday against the Allegheny College Gators. Turnovers marred the entire game for Carnegie Mellon, and while struggling to control the ball, the Tartans couldn’t get it together offensively and only scored 13 points to Allegheny’s 33.

Blanks and Garcia led the Tartan offense again, each scoring a touchdown and rushing for 65 and 57 yards, respectively. Karabin, Winkleman, and Butler led the defense as well with 11, 11, and nine tackles, respectively.

Senior Ray Johnson summed up the loss, “Offensively we weren’t able to sustain long drives like we did in week one. Defensively we gave up some key third-down plays, which helped them get in scoring position.... Turnovers really hurt us throughout the game.”

After a solid win and a disappointing loss, Carnegie Mellon football looks to get back on track this weekend, playing on Friday night against Catholic University in Washington, D.C. The Tartans are gone for the next three weeks and return home on Oct. 8 to take on Ohio Wesleyan University.