Millikin Falls in OT Thriller at IWU

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Published on October 1 2012 8:32 pm
Last Updated on October 1 2012 8:34 pm
Written by Millie Lange

DECATUR -- The Millikin Big Blue football team lost 34-33 in an overtime thriller at #14 Illinois Wesleyan University on Sept. 29 in Bloomington, Ill.
        After a late Illinois Wesleyan rally tied the game at the end of regulation the game went into overtime.  On the Titan’s first possession they scored a touchdown and extra point to go up 34-27.
        On Millikin’s possession the Big Blue scored a touchdown on a pass from Matt Holmes (Wheeling, H.S.) to freshman Sean Maloney (Downers Grove, Nazareth Academy) from 17 yards out.  Playing on the road against a Top 20 team, Millikin Coach Patrick Etherton made to bold call to go for the win with a two-point conversion.  On Millikin’s first attempt at two the Titans were called for defensive holding.  On Millikin’s final try Holmes pass into the corner of the end zone fell incomplete.
        Millikin had a strong first half and took a seven point lead into the locker room at halftime.  Millikin built up a 27-13 advantage early in the third quarter on a Holmes to tight end Avery Aina (Champaign, Centennial H.S.) touchdown six yard touchdown pass.  The play was set up by a Christian Silva (Effingham, H.S.) interception that gave Millikin the ball at the Titan 11 yard line.
        Millikin’s first score of the game came on a 61 yard pass play from Holmes to Erik Tobey (Herscher, H.S.).  On the play the ball tipped off the hands of the Big Blue’s Sean Dunning (Decatur, St. Teresa H.S.) and a heads up Tobey pulled down the catch behind the Titan
defense and raced to the end zone.
        Millikin second score was a Holmes to Alex Chiligiris (Decatur, Maroa Forsyth H.S.) four yard touchdown pass to make it 13-7 Millikin early in the second quarter.
        Later in the quarter a Titan interception gave Illinois Wesleyan the ball at the Millikin five yard line.  On the Titans first play Big Blue linebacker Jake Hazelton (Wilmington, H.S.) stripped ball carrier and Millikin’s Andy Roth (Naperville, Joliet Catholic H.S.) came up with the fumble recovery.  Millikin then drove 87 yards and went up 20-7 on a six yard run by Dunning.
        Holmes finished the game 24-33-1 passing for 257 yards and four touchdowns.  Holmes also accounted for 108 yards rushing.  Dunning had 81 yards rushing and one touchdown.  Tobey had six catches for 86 yardsand one touchdown and Tommy Eichenauer (Decatur, St. Teresa H.S.) had six catches for 67 yards.
        Marquette Moore (Mt. Vernon, H.S.) led Millikin with 13 tackles. Silva had 10.
        Millikin is now 3-1, 0-1 while the Titans go to 4-0, 1-0.  TheBig Blue will host North Central College on Oct. 6 for a 1 p.m. kickoff during Millikin’s Homecoming festivities.