The Hobart football team leaned on its defense in a 16-10 victory over St. Lawrence this afternoon. Senior linebacker Justin Hager led the Statesmen to their 17th consecutive win over the Saints with a game-high 13 tackles.
Hobart (4-0, 2-0 Liberty League) struggled to move the football in the first quarter, punting on its first three possessions, but St. Lawrence (0-5, 0-2) struggled just as much.
Junior cornerback Chris Szymanski stopped SLU’s first drive with an interception at the Hobart 20. After the Saints punted on their second possession, first-year cornerback Drake Woodard stopped St. Lawrence’s third drive with an interception at the Hobart 27.
SLU opened the scoring early in the second quarter when sophomore quarterback J.P. Kearney (35-18-3, 181 yds) capped an 11-play, 63-yard drive with a 1-yard keeper. The extra point gave the Saints a 7-0 lead.
The Statesmen answered with their first scoring drive. From 28 yards out, first-year Conor Callahan booted his first career field goal to make it a 7-3 game.
St. Lawrence was on its way to marching back down the field for another score when junior end Tony Guidetti sacked Kearney for a 14-yard loss on third down and 7 from the Hobart 25, pushing the Saints out of field goal range and effectively ending the first half scoring chances.
The Statesmen offense seemed to solve its first half struggles with its first drive of the second half. Hobart moved 66 yards in just four plays, capped by an 11-yard scoring run by senior running back Anthony Hobaica to take a 9-7 lead. The extra point was no good.
The Statesmen padded their lead late in the third quarter when sophomore running back Andrew Marlier broke free for on a 20-yard touchdown run. Callahan’s PAT gave Hobart a 16-7 advantage.
Meanwhile, St. Lawrence struggled after the break, punting twice and watching a third drive die at the hands of Woodard, who, midway through the frame, registered his league leading fifth interception of the season.
The Saints mounted the final scoring drive of the contest, booting a 26 yard field goal with 11:54 remaining.
Hobart punted—a career-long 53-yarder by junior Tyler Vincent—and had a 31-yard field goal blocked with its final two possessions, but the Statesmen defense made sure St. Lawrence got no closer.
Vincent’s boomer pinned the Saints back at their own 8. SLU managed just a single first down and 15 yards before punting. On the Saints’ final drive, they gained one first down, but on third and 11 from their own 45 junior linebacker Ryan Robinson streaked into the backfield to drop Kearney for a sack and a 12 yard loss and St. Lawrence was force to punt again. Hobart gained two first downs and ran the final 2:57 off the clock.
Senior tackle Ryan Aruck joined Hager in double digits with 12 tackles, including a sack, while senior free safety Lance Boyington added nine tackles.
Marlier averaged 5.8 yards per carry on his way to a team-high 69 yards. Senior quarterback Rich Doyle was 15-of-26 for 137 yards and no interceptions, while also picking up 31 yards on the ground.
Hobart returns to Boswell Field on Oct. 11, when the Statesmen host Union. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m.