BC thumps Bethany College in opener 35-14
By Tim Stried, SID
The Bluffton College defense and the 90 degree heat were too much for Bethany College last Saturday as BC opened up the 1999 football season with 35-14 victory over the Bison in Bethany, West Virginia. The Beavers held Bethany to just 52 yards rushing on the day and picked off three passes while the offense never gave the Bison defense time to catch their breath as Bluffton rolled up 459 yards of total offense.
Middle linebacker Greg Ditz, Willard, was the biggest run-stopper on the afternoon for the Beavers with a team-high seven solo tackles and four assists. The junior also recorded a pass breakup to go with the three BC interceptions turned in by senior Jarret Smotrila, Leetonia Crestview, junior Jeff Company, Bloomington, IL LeRoy, and senior Jeremy Arend, Carey. Smotrila returned his pickoff 35 yards while Company brought his back 19 yards. Arend also recorded two tackles for loss in the game.
An eight yard pass from senior quarterback Joel Parrett, Oakwood Paulding, to senior wide receiver Evan Ward, Carey, got Bluffton on the board first with 9:20 remaining in the first quarter. Junior running back Tyson Goings, Defiance Wayne Trace, then crossed the goal line with 12:05 left in the second quarter with a five yard score for Bluffton's second score. Both PAT attempts were no good.
Bethany connected for a TD at the 9:54 mark in the second quarter, but Bluffton answered right back as senior wide receiver Eric Metz, Norwalk St. Paul, hauled in a five yard pass from Parrett at the 5:52 mark to put Bluffton up 18-7. Sophomore Rick Orr, Bluffton, recovered a fumble in the end zone on the two-point attempt to give the Beavers a 20-7 lead that they would take with them into the locker room at halftime.
Neither team dented the scoreboard again until the fourth quarter when Parrett notched a one yard scoring jaunt at the 11:22 mark and senior fullback Paul Risner, Bellefontaine Versailles, carried for a three yard scoring trip with 8:29 left in the contest. Goings ran in the two-point conversion following Parrett's TD and sophomore Ethan Sells, Galion, kicked the PAT after Risner's scoring effort. Bethany added a TD with 1:13 remaining in the game to finish the scoring and Bluffton walked away with the 35-14 decision.
Goings rushed for 103 yards in the first half and finished the day with 148 yards on 23 carries. Parrett connected on 16 of 23 passes for 198 yards and two TDs for Bluffton while freshman running back Steve Henry, Versailles, netted 60 yards rushing on the day. Risner collected 27 yards rushing and 56 yards receiving on three catches for Bluffton. Metz led the receiving corps with six grabs for 59 yards while Goings hauled in three passes for 53 yards.
Bluffton outgained Bethany 459 to 183 and held the ball for 37:51 compared to 22:09 for Bethany. The Bluffton defense forced seven fumbles and recovered three to go with their three interceptions. Bluffton lost both of their fumbles and threw one interception.
The Beavers (1-0) will be on the road again this Saturday at Hiram College (0-0) for a 1:30 kickoff. Last season Hiram came from behind to down BC 39-24. Bluffton will host their first game of the season in Salzman Stadium on September 18 with Grove City College, Pennsylvania.