WATERTOWN, WI – In their last home game of the season, Maranatha faced the #2 seed in the Northern Athletic Collegiate Conference (NACC), Benedictine University, ultimately falling 55-13 to the Eagles on Saturday afternoon.
The Eagles offensive efficiency was represented in six scores out of seven trips to the end zone while racking up 606 yards of offense, 357 coming through the air while Maranatha finished with 188 toatl offensive yards.
Benedictine opened the game by marching 63 yards down the field for a 7-0 lead, but on their next possession, the Eagles were intercepted by freshman cornerback Clayton Morrison (Jefferson, WI) on a tipped pass.
Maranatha could not convert on the interception, turning the ball over after a seven-yard sack on sophomore quarterback Brandon McCormick (Edwards, IL) and four plays later, Benedictine scored their second touchdown of the game with 3:32 left in the first quarter.
The Crusaders trailed 35-0 partway through the second quarter when several key passes, a pass interference setup Maranatha’s first touchdown of the game. McCormick connected with junior receiver Jordan DeLay (Flint, MI) once on a 26-yard strike and another, a 16-yard pass to open the drive.
Three plays later, Benedictine was called for a pass interference penalty that put the ball on the two-yard line, and on second and goal, freshman running back Clint Saxon (Watertown, WI) rushed from one-yard out to give Maranatha a 35-7 deficit.
Benedictine added one more touchdown before the half to lead 42-7 and extended it to 55-7 on a one-yard rush on their second possession of the third quarter.
Maranatha countered the Eagles on their next drive as McCormick hit Saxon for a nine-yard gain, and five plays later would deliver a 28-yard pass, punctuated with a beautiful diving catch by DeLay over the outstretched arms of the Benedictine defensive back.
McCormick put the finishing touches on the eight-play, 52-yard drive with a fitting 10-yard pass to none other than De Lay for their 13th point of the game.
Maranatha’s sophomore quarterback finished with 184 yards passing with one touchdown while DeLay hauled in an impressive 99 yards on nine receptions for a touchdown.
On defense, junior linebacker Ethan Kennon (Raleigh, N.C.) amassed 19 tackles, 1.5 for loss while freshman linebacker Ben Schulz (Lake Mills, WI) posted 11 tackles.
Maranatha concludes the regular season next Saturday, November 16, against Concordia University Chicago at 12:00 p.m. in River Forest, IL.