/seasons/2011/contrib/20111112eq4oed

Albion Puts Exclamation Point on MIAA Title

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ALBION, Mich. - Albion College's desire to gain sole possession of the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association football championship was clearly evident from the opening kickoff as it put the exclamation point on its 34th league title with a 41-14 victory over Trine University in front of a packed house at Sprankle-Sprandel Stadium.

"We talked about (the outright MIAA title) all week," Albion Coach Craig Rundle admitted after the contest. "We didn't want to share it with anyone. Trine has been a great team the last three years, winning the league and doing it outright themselves. We thought we could measure ourselves pretty well if we could do the same thing."

Mike Vandermus recovered Trine's fumble on the opening kickoff and it took the Britons five plays to cover the 24 yards for their first touchdown of the day. Clinton Orr carried the bulk of the load, gaining 16 yards on the drive including the final three yards for the score.

Albion extended the margin to 10-0 as it ripped off an eight-play drive on its next possession. Orr gashed the Thunder on runs of 11 and 17 yards to set up Nick Pendell's 35-yard field goal.

Jason Bajas' strip sack led to Albion's third first-quarter score. The Britons took possession at the Trine 14, but had to settle for Pendell's 26-yard field goal.

The Albion offense took full advantage of John Lesinski's interception early in the second quarter. Spencer Krauss hooked up with Brian Spencer for an 11-yard gain on the first play to move the ball to the Trine 15. Krauss executed the quarterback sneak perfectly on fourth down from the Trine 6 and he capped the drive by rolling out to the right side for a 1-yard run.

Trine went to a faster tempo on offense late in the first half and it paid off in the form of an eight-play, 75-yard scoring drive. Ryan Hargraves completed five passes on the possession, including a 25-yard touchdown strike to Ja Vontae Hence.

Both teams had just two possessions in the third quarter. Albion extended the lead to 27-7 by scoring on its second possession. The Britons overcame a holding penalty as Krauss hit Zach Brewer for a 28-yard gain to the Trine 4. After two Orr carries moved to ball close to the goal line, Wes Dolen plunged the final yard for the score.

Albion scored on its first two possessions of the fourth quarter as Krauss found Spencer for a 16-yard score and seniors Alex Harris and Matt Gunsorek hooked up for a 4-yard play.

Orr posted his second 200-yard rushing game of the season to become Albion's career rushing leader. Only a junior, Orr has rolled up 3,163 yards in 28 games.

The Albion defense accepted at the challenge of holding Kent Biller, the MIAA's fourth-leader rusher, to 81 yards. Linebackers Brett McCarty and Lesinski finished with 13 and 10 tackles, respectively. Jacob Heinrich wrapped up two sacks and batted down two passes. Bajas also wrapped up two sacks.

Albion, 6-4 overall and 6-0 against its MIAA rivals, will receive its itinerary for the first round of the NCAA Division III Football Championship at 6 p.m. Sunday. The selections will be announced via live stream on www.NCAA.com.

Sep. 23: All times Eastern
Final
at Framingham State 50, Massachusetts Maritime 7
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Muhlenberg 56, at Juniata 40
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at Dean 25, Becker 10
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Salisbury 27, at TCNJ 7
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MIT 38, at Catholic 21
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Merchant Marine 56, at Maine Maritime 31
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at Hobart 34, Endicott 17
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at Morrisville State 44, Nichols 22
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at Delaware Valley 27, Stevenson 7
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at Albright 9, Widener 7
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Christopher Newport 16, at Montclair State 8
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at Westminster (Pa.) 41, Bethany 14
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Middlebury 41, at Bowdoin 14
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Williams 24, at Colby 7
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Amherst 36, at Hamilton 6
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Ursinus 35, at Moravian 17
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Trinity (Conn.) 51, at Bates 0
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at LaGrange 38, Brevard 28
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Geneva 33, at Thiel 24
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at Plymouth State 37, Mass-Dartmouth 7
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Kean 28, at Southern Virginia 14
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Frostburg State 24, at Rowan 10
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Union 17, at Curry 14
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at Carnegie Mellon 37, Thomas More 17
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Lycoming 44, at King's 41
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at Western New England 21, Husson 14
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Johns Hopkins 41, at Dickinson 10
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at Ohio Wesleyan 37, Allegheny 21
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at Misericordia 43, Wilkes 14
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Wesley 66, at William Paterson 0
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at N.C. Wesleyan 35, Maryville (Tenn.) 25
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Huntingdon 31, at Ferrum 28
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at McDaniel 27, Gettysburg 20
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at Buffalo State 33, RPI 21
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Franklin and Marshall 27, at Susquehanna 24
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at Denison 45, Oberlin 17
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at Northwestern (Minn.) 10, Westminster (Mo.) 7
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at Eureka 44, Crown 20
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at Lebanon Valley 24, FDU-Florham 14
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at Heidelberg 47, John Carroll 21
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at Ohio Northern 35, Otterbein 7
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at Mount Union 55, Baldwin Wallace 7
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at Rose-Hulman 37, Defiance 14
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at Marietta 49, Muskingum 25
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Franklin 59, at Bluffton 30
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at Hanover 64, Anderson 21
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Mount St. Joseph 31, at Manchester 14
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Worcester State 34, at Westfield State 10
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Coast Guard 13, at Norwich 9
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at Fitchburg State 31, Bridgewater State 29
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Wittenberg 48, at Kenyon 11
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at Wabash 25, Hiram 21
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North Central (Ill.) 51, at Millikin 21
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at Millsaps 17, Sewanee 13
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at Rhodes 35, Birmingham-Southern 9
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at Hendrix 36, Austin 24
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at Martin Luther 34, Greenville 20
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at Trinity (Texas) 41, Chapman 35
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at Loras 73, Buena Vista 34
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at Wartburg 30, Washington U. 20
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at Gustavus Adolphus 51, Hamline 7
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Augsburg 48, at Carleton 28
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at Bethel 64, St. Olaf 7
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at Luther 21, Dubuque 17
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at Central 52, Nebraska Wesleyan 27
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Simpson 38, at Coe 33
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Wheaton (Ill.) 40, at Elmhurst 15
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St. Norbert 66, at Grinnell 13
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at Knox 13, Ripon 6
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at MacMurray 32, Iowa Wesleyan 14
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Hardin-Simmons 63, at Howard Payne 3
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Southwestern 37, at Louisiana College 34
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Monmouth 26, at Macalester 0
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at St. Thomas 20, St. John's 17
@ Target Field, Minneapolis
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at Springfield 42, WPI 10
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at Cornell 55, Beloit 36
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at Brockport 28, Utica 14
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at Hartwick 24, St. John Fisher 21
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at UW-La Crosse 41, Carroll 6
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at St. Scholastica 37, Minnesota-Morris 3
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at George Fox 44, UW-Eau Claire 0
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at Western Connecticut 37, Salve Regina 23
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at UW-Stevens Point 41, Adrian 28
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at Wesleyan 24, Tufts 17
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at Averett 35, Methodist 6
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at Berry 28, Centre 14
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at Case Western Reserve 56, Waynesburg 21
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at Grove City 24, St. Vincent 14
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at Illinois Wesleyan 18, North Park 0
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at Mary Hardin-Baylor 50, Texas Lutheran 7
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at UW-Platteville 56, Lakeland 22
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Carthage 55, at Augustana 14
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Chicago 28, at Illinois College 7
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at Sul Ross State 35, McMurry 7
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at Wilmington 37, Capital 30
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Lake Forest 42, at Lawrence 26
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at East Texas Baptist 79, Belhaven 40
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Arizona Christian 56, at Whittier 38
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Sep. 28: All times Eastern
6:30 PM
Shenandoah at Randolph-Macon
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Sep. 29: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Delaware Valley at FDU-Florham
Sep. 23: All times Eastern
Final
at Delaware Valley 27, Stevenson 7
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Wesley 66, at William Paterson 0
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at Alfred 45, Rochester 7
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Johns Hopkins 41, at Dickinson 10
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Frostburg State 24, at Rowan 10
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at Heidelberg 47, John Carroll 21
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Final
at Mount Union 55, Baldwin Wallace 7
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Final
Wittenberg 48, at Kenyon 11
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at Wabash 25, Hiram 21
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Hardin-Simmons 63, at Howard Payne 3
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North Central (Ill.) 51, at Millikin 21
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Final
Wheaton (Ill.) 40, at Elmhurst 15
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Final
at St. Thomas 20, St. John's 17
@ Target Field, Minneapolis
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Final
at Brockport 28, Utica 14
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Final
at Case Western Reserve 56, Waynesburg 21
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at Illinois Wesleyan 18, North Park 0
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at UW-Platteville 56, Lakeland 22
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at Mary Hardin-Baylor 50, Texas Lutheran 7
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Sep. 29: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Delaware Valley at FDU-Florham