ADRIAN, MICH. -- Junior Dylan Dowling rushed for two touchdowns, but the Trine University football team fell just short of Adrian (Mich.) College in a Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association game at Docking Stadium in Adrian, Mich.
Dowling finished with 19 yards on four touches (4.8 yards per carry) to go along with his two TD. Senior Seth Boggs (Sandusky, Ohio/Perkins) led Trine in rushing with 67 yards in 13 attempts (5.2 ypc) and freshman Xaine Kirby (Sweetser, Ind./Eastbrook) was second with 49 yards on six caries (8.2 ypc.).
Freshman Alex Price (Reading, Mich./Reading) started the game at quarterback and completed five-of-16 pass attempts for 81 yards. Sophomore Jake Hill (Lizton, Ind./Tri-West) also saw playing time behind center and completed two-of-11 pass attempts for 29 yards.
Senior Jacob Chesney (Kirklin, Ind./Sheridan) finished as the team's leading receiver with three catches for 55 yards (18.3 yards per catch).
On defense, junior Keysean Amison (Sandusky, Ohio/Perkins) finished with a game-high 10 tackles (nine solo and one assist). Seniors Carl Sandford (Detroit, Mich./Lincoln) and Simeon Washington (Toledo, Ohio/Central Catholic) were both tied for second with seven tackles each. Both players also had a tackle for loss.
Trine (4-5, 1-5 MIAA) took a gamble early in the first quarter on their first possession of the game with a fake punt from inside their own 10-yard line, but the attempt would end in a fumble and gave possession over to Adrian (5-4, 4-2 MIAA) in prime scoring territory. The Thunder defense held the Bulldogs out of the endzone and forced a 23-yard field goal to limit the damage and trail by a score of 3-0.
On Trine's next drive, the Thunder answered the three Adrian points with a field goal of their own when senior Lucas Garza (Syracuse, Ind./Wawasee) connected on a 31-yard attempt that evened the game at 3-3 with 6:28 remaining in the first quarter.
Freshman Jake Gladieux (Oregon, Ohio/Whitmer) broke the tie for Trine later in the period with a safety on a quarterback sack in the Adrian endzone gave the Thunder the lead by a score of, 5-3. The safety was the final points of the quarter.
In the second quarter, Adrian regained the lead at the 10:24 minute mark with the game's third overall field goal on a 36-yard attempt that made the score, 6-5. The Bulldogs added to their lead with the game's first touchdown with 12 seconds left in the half thanks to a one-yard TD run to make it a 13-5 margin at the intermission.
In the third quarter, Adrian scored the first points of the second half with a touchdown on a three-yard scamper with 10:43 to play to add to the Trine deficit, 20-5. On Trine's ensuing drive, the Thunder answered the Bulldog score with a 10-play, 64-yard drive that ended in a one-yard score by Dowling to cut the margin to 20-12 with 7:01 to play in the period.
The two teams continued to trade scores as Adrian found the endzone on its next offensive possession that spanned 71 yards in seven plays and ended in a 13-yard TD run that put the Bulldogs back out ahead by 15 points, 27-12. But Trine wouldn't go away as the ensuing kickoff was picked up by Amison who returned it 65 yards to essentially wipe out the earlier Bulldog score and pull Trine back to within eight points, 27-19. Adrian would strike one more time before the end of the period, however, on a 32-yard pass completion to extend it to a 34-19 advantage after 45 minutes.
Trine inched closer on the scoreboard in the fourth quarter with a touchdown on a 12-yard run by Dowling with 7:48 to go in the game to make it a one-possesion contest yet again, 34-26. The Thunder would get one more shot at a potential game-tying score and got to the Adrian 12-yard line. But Trine was forced into a fourth-and-10 play that just missed to the corner of the endzone with just under a minute remaining. Adrian was then able to run out the remaining time, aided by a personal foul call that resulted in a first down for the Bulldogs, to go on to claim the eight-point victory.
Trine will wrap-up the 2019 season next Saturday (Nov. 16) when it hosts Kalamazoo (Mich.) College in a MIAA contest at Fred Zollner Athletic Stadium. It will also be senior day with kickoff scheduled for 1 p.m.