After finishing the season with four wins and starting the new year with a pair, Hillsdale College ran out of magic on the football field down in Tiffin today.
Redshirt freshman Steven Ficyk made his first collegiate start in place of Chance Stewart who had cracked his sternum in the opener against Indianapolis. Ficyk completed 9 of his first 10 passes and had Hillsdale within 3 points (17-14) at the half.
Tiffin blew a nip and tuck game wide open by scoring in the final seconds of the first half and then again on the first possession of the second half. All of a sudden a 14-10 Hillsdale lead had swung to a two possession 23-14 lead for the Dragon. Tiffin extended that lead to 30-14 before Hillsdale drew within 10 on a Timmy Mills 35 yard reception on Ficyk’s first collegiate touchdown. It was 30-20 Tiffin five seconds into the 4th and still a ballgame.
The Dragons slammed the door shut with a 65 yard fumble return that ended the only real momentum Hillsdale would muster the rest of the way.
Joe Reverman had 77 yards rushing for Hillsdale on 19 carries. Tiffin schemed heavily to stop the Charger back, forcing Ficyk and his receivers to beat them. Pressure on the young passer limited him to just 9 completions on 19 attempts in the second half.
Just as Hillsdale’s scoring 14 points off of turnovers last week against Walsh played big in the win. Giving up 14 points on turnovers this week to Tiffin played a roll in the loss. Hillsdale was also soundly beaten on both sides of the ball in the battle to convert and stop on 3rd down.
Chargers return home next week to face Michigan Tech for Homecoming.