After blowing the game wide open at 23-7, Hillsdale let Indianapolis continue to hang around too long and it bit them big time. There were too many missed opportunities all night.
Don’t get me wrong. There were a lot of great plays. The Charger defense turned the Greyhounds away time after time. At several points throughout the night, I said to myself that stops including Tom Korte’s interception would help the Chargers seal the deal. They shoulda, coulda, woulda, but didn’t.
Credit Mark Petro for handing in one of the most complete games of his career, converting on 3 field goal attempts and 3 PAT opportunities. Only getting 9 points on those trips instead of 21 kept Indy alive though.
Here is the ugliest stat of the night. Hillsdale was 0 for 9 on 3rd down. They were 14 of 18 last week on 3rd down in the 37-0 win over Michigan Tech. Critical penalties didn’t help any either.
Hillsdale did protect the football well and with the fumble recovery and 2 interceptions by the defense, Hillsdale moves to a +13 on the season.
The offense showed it could strike from anywhere as evidenced by quarterback Mark Nicolet’s back-to-back touchdown strikes to Aaron Waldie (63 yards) and Nick Gurica (72 yards) that put Hillsdale up 30-14. But instead of pushing for more points and definitive score, things ground to a halt as Hillsdale tried to go between the tackles on possessions in the 4th quarter that got them nothing. They burnt some clock only to see Indianapolis burn up the turf in the opposite direction for 20 unanswered points 4th quarter points and the victory.
Mark Nicolet turned in another 300 yard plus performance going 16 of 25 for 346 yards, 3 touchdowns and no interceptions. Gurica caught 7 balls for 145 yards and a score. Waldie caught 4 for 133 and 2 scores.
Tom Korte and Palmer Schoening both had 11 tackles. Korte was unvailable for the final series with what has been reported to be an ankle injury. All in Chargerblue need to pray for a swift recovery.
Hillsdale returns home against Wayne State next Saturday afternoon for a 2:30 kickoff. The Chargers have loved the homecooking and have been lights out at home. A cat named Joique Bell comes to Hillsdale looking to test the Chargers in what will be another very tough battle in the GLIAC.
Like I said, still a lot of great performances and this Hillsdale program continues to perform at a highly improved level. It’s just those little things that sneak up on you and get you. The Chargers are now 4-2 overall and in the GLIAC.