|Olivet Nazarene Univ (3-0)||6||7||0||7||20|
|Siena Heights Univ. (0-2)||2||9||0||0||11|
|Olivet Nazarene Univ||Indv. Leaders||Siena Heights Univ.|
|#24 Erik Anderson - 77||Rushing||#25 D'aries Davis - 100|
|#8 Jordan Lawton - 149||Passing||#16 Lucas Barner Jr - 177|
|#9 Rashaan Gaymon - 93||Receiving||#4 Deontae' Rush - 63|
|Olivet Nazarene Univ||Team Statistics||Siena Heights Univ.|
ADRIAN, Mich. – Erik Anderson (SR/St. Charles, Ill.)'s five yard touchdown run with 6:10 remaining in the game on Saturday afternoon put a stamp on a 20-11 win over Siena Heights University (Mich.). The nine-point road win for second-year head coach Eric Hehman and the Olivet Nazarene University football team propelled them a 3-0 start to the 2017 season, something that has not been done by a Tiger team since 1996. That same team also started 4-0 21 seasons ago. ONU's defense again showed up big for a second straight week holding the Saints to zero points in the second half.
Coach Hehman is excited about his team's start to the 2017 season. "It was a hard fought game (against Siena Heights). We made the plays we needed to make at the end of the game. I am proud of how we compete as a team."
Unlike the start in ONU's (3-0) first two games, neither team scored in its first possession. On the Tigers second possession, they took the ball with 8:31 to go in the first quarter and drove it 75 yards on nine plays. Jordan Lawton (SO/Lakewood, Calif.) eventually found Rashaan Gaymon (JR/Cape Coral, Fla.) for a 37-yard strike and a 6-0 lead. It was Gaymon's team-leading fourth touchdown of the season. However, the extra-point was blocked and Zachary Flack returned it for Siena Heights (0-2) for two points.
However, it would take the Saints two more drives to put any offensive points on the board. With 12:18 to go in the first half they started on their own 28-yard line after a Josh Anderson (SO/San Juan Capistrano, Calif.) punt. The Saints then drove 59 yards, but were stopped by the Tiger defense and forced to kick a field goal from 30-yards out. Brady Tanquay made the kick to make it 6-5. ONU didn't let the points faze them as they struck back with the first touchdown of the game on their next drive. Lawton took the Tigers 12 plays over a 5:44 span and found Alika Kahaulelio (JR/Kaneohe, Hawaii) from 13 yards outs to make it 12-5, the PAT was good. Yet, the Saints responded with a nine play drive that only took 1:55 and made it 13-11 on a Barner pass that found Deontae' Rush from three yards out.
On the second possession of the second half for the Tigers, Jordan Lawton threw his first interception of the season. However, the Saints were unable convert as they missed the 42-yard field goal attempt. Olivet took the ball from Siena Heights and went 72 yards, all the way down to the Saint three-yard line, but were stopped on a fourth-and-goal keeping ONU from extending its lead. Nevertheless, the Tiger defense showed up when they needed to the most. They forced a punt and a fumble on consecutive possessions giving ONU the ball back on the Saint's seven-yard line with 6:57 to go in the game. Two plays later Erik Anderson scored and the Tigers led 19-11, the PAT made it 20-11. All the Tigers needed were one more stop and they did just that on the Saints' next drive forcing a punt five plays later. A big reason ONU kept Siena Heights scoreless in the final 30 minutes; the Saints only managed five first downs in the second half.
Jordan Lawton went 14-for-21 yards, throwing for 149 yards and two touchdowns. Erik had 24 carries for 77 yards and one touchdown and caught three balls for 14 yards. Kevin Harris (FR/South Holland, Ill.) had eight carries for 34 yards. Rashaan Gaymon had five catches for 93 yards and a score. Ryan Stoves (SO/Birmingham, Ala.) had three catches for 24 yards.
Linebacker Caleb Coe (JR/Cedarville, Ohio) led the way with 10 tackles. T.J. Layne (SO/Morris, Ill.) had seven tackles, and one sack for four yards. T.J. Foulks (SR/Onarga, Ill.) had five tackles and one sack and Sebastian Swift (SR/San Diego, Calif.) had seven tackles and one for loss. Arinze Ekowa (FR/Plainfield, Ill.) had five tackles, two for loss and one sack for seven yards.
Siena Heights starting quarterback, Lucas Barner, Jr. went 23-for-38 for 177yards and threw one touchdown to Deontae' Rush who caught 10 passes for 63 yards. D'aries Davis led all rushers with 19 carries for 100 yards.
The Tigers will back at Ward Field next Saturday at 1 p.m. against Concordia University-Ann Arbor (Mich.).