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September 25, 2021

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Saint Vincent wins on Bluffton turf, 34-14

The Bluffton University football team struggled to move the ball in a 34-14 loss to Saint Vincent on a windy Saturday, Sept. 11. The Beavers fell to 0-2 after dropping their home opener to the Bearcats. It marked the first-ever meeting between the two schools on the gridiron.

With the defenses on display to open the first period, it took a 52-yard scoring strike from Brady Walker to Keith Kelp at the 6:45 mark of the first quarter to get St. Vincent on the scoreboard. The Beavers evened it up when Antione Coulter (Toledo/Bowsher) picked up a Bearcat fumble three minutes later and took it all the way home from the Bluffton 20 for an 80-yard recovery and score!

Two touchdown drives by the visitors in the second frame made it 21-7 heading to the break as the Bluffton offense was unable to make any inroads in the Bearcat defense.

Following another touchdown by St. Vincent midway through the third quarter, freshman Blake Rine (Heath/Granville) hit senior Jeremy Locklear (Lincoln Park, Mich./Harry S. Truman) in stride for a 75-yard scoring strike that made the score 28-14. Kalp's second TD reception of over 50 yards with 9:57 to play pushed the final score 34-14 in favor of the Bearcats.

St. Vincent moved the chains 20 times, compared to just seven first downs for the Beavers. Bluffton finished with just 173 yards, converting only 1-of-15 third down opportunities. The Bearcats nearly doubled Bluffton in time of possession (38:20-21:40).

Rine completed 11-of-32 passing attempts for 143 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Calvin Dudley (Akron/Coventry) and Todd King Jr. (Springfield) went for 30 and 25 yards on the ground, respectively. Locklear hauled in four passes for 90 yards, including his 75-yard touchdown reception.

Louden Saulbeamer (Dayton/Troy Christian) and Nick Perry (Northwood/Lake), who had 3.5 TFL's for 12 yards, racked up 10 and nine tackles, respectively. Davon Hedwood (Westland, Mich./Thurston) had seven stops and an 18-yard interception return. Keith Holmes Jr. (Toledo/St. Francis DeSales) stuffed the stat sheet with six tackles, four TFL's for 27 yards, two sacks for 14 yards, a breakup, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. Coulter had an 80-yard fumble recovery for a touchdown.

Bluffton travels to Kalamazoo College on Saturday, Sept. 18, before a bye week heading into Homecoming when the Beavers welcome Mount St. Joseph to Alumni Field. Kickoff with the Hornets is slated for 1 p.m.