From University of Chicago Athletics
The University of Chicago football team scored on every trip to the red zone and held Elmhurst College's potent run game in check to earn a 29-17 victory on Saturday.
The Maroons start the season 3-0 for the second-straight year and have now defeated the Bluejays (1-2) in three of their last four meetings.
Elmhurst marched down the field on its first drive of the game, eating up 76 yards on 13 plays. The Bluejays had the ball at the one-yard line on first-and-goal. However, UChicago came up with a big goal-line stand and forced the hosts to settle for a 21-yard field goal. The Maroons then received the ball and put together a 15-play drive of their own. Upon reaching Elmhurst's 35-yard line, UChicago faced fourth down and six yards to go. The visitors went for it, and senior quarterback Patrick Ryan completed his pass to junior wide receiver Sam Coleman for nine yards and a first down. Junior kicker Karol Kurzydlowski soon tied the score at 3-3 with a 37-yard field goal.
On the very next drive, UChicago got aggressive on fourth down once again. Ryan tossed a six-yard pass to sophomore wide receiver Chris Masonto get the exact yardage he needed, which reached the Elmhurst 16-yard line. Sophomore tight end Brian Welch capped the 12-play, 76-yard drive by snagging a 10-yard touchdown from the arm of Ryan.
The Maroons got the ball back late in the second quarter and marched down to the opposing three-yard line. Ryan completed a couple of big gains to junior tight end Nathan Massey which traveled 14 and 29 yards. Kurzydlowski put UChicago up 13-3 heading into halftime with a 21-yard field goal.
The long drives helped the visitors to keep the ball out of Elmhurst's hands. UChicago was 5-for-10 on third down and 2-for-2 on fourth down. The offense chewed up 18:11 of game clock compared to 11:49 for Elmhurst.
After pinning the Bluejays to their own five-yard line to start the second half, the Maroons got the ball back on the Elmhurst 48-yard line. Kurzydlowski came through again at the end of the possession with a 35-yard field goal to make the score 16-3. Elmhurst quickly rallied back with a drive that ate up almost eight minutes of game clock. Several UChicago penalties aided the cause and a four-yard touchdown run brought the home team back to within a score at 16-10.
A three-and-out by Elmhurst early in the fourth quarter gave UChicago good field position once again. The Maroons leaned on the run game for all five plays and traveled 44 yards. Senior running back Zak Ross-Nash burst through for a 22-yard touchdown scamper to give his team some breathing room at 22-10.
The Bluejays had their backs pressed to the end zone later in the fourth quarter on their own three-yard line. The quarterback's pass was picked off on third down by junior linebacker Nick Pielech, and on the very next play, Ross-Nash barreled into the end zone for a 15-yard touchdown run.
Elmhurst drove 83 yards for a short touchdown pass on its next possession, but the ensuing onside kick was recovered by UChicago. The Maroons converted yet another fourth down and ran out the clock for a 29-17 win.
UChicago held the edge in total offensive yards, 312 to 224. The Maroons pounded the rock and rushed 44 times for 172 yards. Ross-Nash toted the ball 26 times for 105 yards and two touchdowns. Ryan's passing totals included 12 completions on 25 attempts for 140 yards and one touchdown. He also ran the ball five times for 33 yards. Massey led the way in receiving yards with 68 on four catches.
Defensively, the Maroons held Elmhurst running back Josh Williams to 53 yards on 13 carries. Last week, Williams ran for a school-record 306 yards versus Olivet College. The Bluejays were limited to 80 rushing yards total on 28 carries.
Sophomore linebacker Jackson Garrey paced the defense with eight tackles and junior cornerback Chris Dengler made six tackles of his own. Senior linebacker Schuyler Montefalco, senior defensive end Brandon Bolock and sophomore defensive tackle Eddie Giannina registered one sack apiece. Bolock also had two tackles for a loss and two pass breakups.