Andrew Woodley -- Otterbein Sports Information
WESTERVILLE, Ohio – The Otterbein University Cardinals kicked off the 2012 season with a 15-0 victory over Gallaudet University in Tim Doup's first game as head coach of the Cardinals at Memorial Stadium Saturday afternoon.
With the win, Otterbein starts the season 1-0 and hands Doup his first head coaching victory. Meanwhile, the Bison fall to 0-1 after a second-consecutive season-opening loss to the Cardinals.
Doup, who was the team's offensive coordinator for the past nine seasons, is the first Otterbein head coach to win his opening game since Rocky Alt in 2001. Doup was promoted to head coach in May after former coach Joe Loth resigned to accept the head coaching position at Western Connecticut State University.
The Cardinal defense, which was ranked ninth in the Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) last season, held Gallaudet to just 219 yards of total offense and completed their first shutout since the 2010 opener when thety defeated Husson College 38-0.
On Otterbein's first drive of the game, senior quarterback Aaron Kingcade led the Cards deep into Gallaudet territory. But the Bison ended Otterbein's drive with an interception at the one-yard line.
On the next play senior Joe Whitehead penetrated the Bison line and tackled Gallaudet running back Braxton Baker in the end zone to give Otterbein a 2-0 lead less than five minutes into the game.
The Cardinals added three more points on a 31-yard field goal by sophomore Nick Ganus to take a 5-0 lead into the second quarter.
Both teams went scoreless in the second frame. Otterbein had two opportunities to score but failed to add to their lead on both tries. Ganus missed a 40-yard field goal attempt on their first possession of the quarter, and Kingcade was intercepted at the Gallaudet 5-yard line on their second try.
The Cardinals started the second half in Bison territory after junior Alex Cameron took the opening kickoff back to the Gallaudet 49-yard line. A facemask penalty on the play put Otterbein at the 34-yard line but the Cardinals had to settle for a 37-yard field goal from Ganus to make the score 8-0 with 13:19 left in the third quarter.
Otterbein finally punched the ball into the end zone in the fourth quarter. Aaron Kingcade ran the ball in on a third and goal from the 4-yard line to put the Cardinals up 15-0 with 11:26 left in the game.
Gallaudet failed to cut into the deficit at all and the Cardinals chewed up the clock on the ground to pick up the victory.
Kingcade, who was an All-North Region punter last season, finished the game 11 of 18 for 118 yards in his first start as the Otterbein quarterback. He added six carries on the ground for 17 yards and a touchdown.
Senior Brock Burzanko carried the load for the Cardinals with 13 rushes for 42 yards while junior Steven Carpenter led Otterbein through the air with four catches for 30 yards.
Defensively, the Cardinals held the Gallaudet offense in check and never allowed the Bison to gain more than 20 yards on a single play. Otterbein racked up nine tackles for loss and only allowed Gallaudet to convert 3 of 11 third-down tries.
Junior Jaylin Kennedy intercepted two passes for the Cards, while senior Chad Pepper and juniors Zack Grieves and Patrick Seesholtz all had six tackles to pace the defense. Grieves and Seesholtz each had a sack as well.
The Cardinals are idle next weekend and will return to action in two weeks when they travel to Wilmington College to play the Quakers in their OAC opener. Kick-off for the game is scheduled for 7 p.m.