The Maroons rolled into Rhodes College on Saturday, the sting of the previous weekend’s loss to Berry still fresh in every player’s mind. However, the team managed to grind out a 21–7 win over their Memphis opponent behind a fast start and some stalwart defense.
Playing in the third-annual Blues Bowl, Chicago got started quickly. The team worked the ball downfield methodically, completing pass after pass before second-year running back Chandler Carroll eventually pounded the ball in from two yards out. The Chicago defense responded with their own authoritative statement, forcing a quick three and out from the Lynx offense.
Getting the ball back quickly, junior quarterback Burke Moser wasted no time finding the end zone again. He hooked up with fourth-year wide receiver Sam Coleman for a 52-yard touchdown pass. Moser, who ended the day with 244 yards and two touchdowns, has played terrifically through the first half of the season, averaging 250 yards per game to go with 15 touchdowns.
After another three and out shutdown by the defense, the Maroons got the ball back and worked their way down field fast thanks to a 39-yard completion by Coleman. In the red zone, Moser found second-year receiver Jamie Rieger from seven yards out to make the score 21–0 only 11 minutes into the game.
“We love going out with a lead and knowing if we stop the other team then we’re good,” said second-year defensive end Peter Casey. “It lets us play loose and fast when the offense makes plays.”
Given their sizeable cushion, the Chicago defense went to work, shutting down the Rhodes offense for much of the game and only allowing two plays in the red zone until the fourth quarter. “The D line was dominating out there,” Casey said, who had two sacks and six tackles on the day. “Rhodes’ O line didn’t have any idea what was going on.”
The Lynxes managed to score in the fourth quarter off of a one-yard rush, but the game was well in hand by that point as the defense showed no sign of allowing anything more. The game was another mark in a string of recent success for the Maroon defense. Though the offense has slowed down from its blazing start, the team has only given up an average of 15 points per game over the last three matches. Casey thought that their success has permeated the entire defensive unit, and that everyone had been making plays. “The D line and linebackers have really stepped up in stopping the run and our secondary is making a lot more plays in the last few weeks.”
The Maroons will square off against Hendrix next Saturday in the homecoming game. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:25 p.m. at Stagg Field on October 24.