GETTYSBURG, Pa. - Junior Hewitt Tomlin passed for 326 yards and three touchdowns as Johns Hopkins University defeated Gettysburg College 29-21 in the Centennial Conference (CC) opener for both teams Saturday afternoon at Shirk Field at Musselman Stadium.
Johns Hopkins (1-1, 1-0 CC), the defending CC champion, used a 19-0 run spanning the second and third quarters to take control after falling behind 7-0 on the game's opening drive.
Senior Tucker Michels caught seven passes for 135 yards and one touchdown for the Blue Jays while junior Sam Wernick also grabbed seven receptions for 125 yards and a pair of TDs.
Sophomore tight end Matt Brophy caught seven passes for a 147 yards for Gettysburg (1-1, 0-1 CC), which was playing its home opener. Junior Kyle Whitmoyer passed for 269 yards for the Bullets while senior tailback Jamel Mutunga led all rushers with 83 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Both teams suffered on special teams. Johns Hopkins had two extra points blocked, and the Bullets had a pair of punts blocked which both led to Blue Jay touchdowns.
At halftime of the game, 35 members of the 1964 football team were recognized. The team was holding a reunion for its Middle Atlantic Conference University Division championship.
Junior safety Joe Delaney led all players with a career-high 16 tackles for Gettysburg while by junior linebacker Peter Hak made 12 stops. Sophomore linebacker Larry DelViscio added 11 tackles for the Bullets while junior linebacker Ryan Piatek made 11 hits for Johns Hopkins.
The Bullets, who entered the game ranked 19th in Division III in total offense, ran up 444 yards against the Blue Jays. Johns Hopkins racked up 463 yards of offense.
Gettysburg went up 7-0 on a Mutunga 8-yard touchdown run after driving 77 yards on 11 plays on the opening drive. Johns Hopkins answered with a pair of second-quarter touchdowns, but both extra points were blocked, the second by Hak, and the Blue Jays led 12-7 at halftime. Wernick put Hopkins on top to stay with a 37-yard touchdown reception, the first play after a Scott Barletta blocked punt, with 12:01 left in the half.
The Blue Jays' Jonathan Rigaud returned the second-half opening kickoff 96 yards for a touchdown and what would have been a Johns Hopkins record, but it was called back due to a personal foul. The Bullets would force Hopkins to punt, but on the ensuing possession Taylor Maciow blocked another Gettysburg punt, which was recovered at the Bullet-4. Three plays later, Tomlin hooked up with Wernick again, this time from 16 yards out, to give the Jays a 19-7 advantage with 9:43 to go in the third quarter.
The Bullets pulled to within five points twice, the last on a Whitmoyer 5-yard touchdown run with 12:10 to go that made it 26-21, but that's as close as the hosts would get. Senior Alex Lachman set the final score with a 24-yard field goal with 8:01 remaining.
On Gettysburg's final drive, the Bullets drove to the Hopkins-21, but Whitmoyer was sacked by junior defensive end Dan Keenan to make it fourth-and-19. Whitmoyer's deep lob down the right sideline intended for senior receiver Brian Betley was broken up by junior cornerback Sam Eagleson with 5:19 left.
The Blue Jays were able to run off the remainder of the clock by converting three first downs, including a pair on third down. Tomlin found Wernick down the middle of the field for a 35-yard pickup on third-and-12 from the team's own 37 after a Bullet timeout with 4:07 to go, and junior Nick Fazio rushed four yards to convert a third-and-3 from the Bullet-21 to put the game away.