HAMPDEN-SYDNEY, Va. – Shenandoah University registered possibly the biggest football upset in school history with a 36-35 ODAC victory over Hampden-Sydney Saturday afternoon.
Shenandoah (3-4, 2-2 ODAC) erased a 19-0 first quarter deficit to stun the first-place Tigers (5-2, 3-1).
SU scored the winning points by driving 64 yards in eight plays, finishing with a Qlyl Middelijn 22-yard TD reception with 47 second remaining.
The Hornets elected to forgo the potential game-tying PAT and went for the win, giving the ball to sophomore Andrew Smith around right end for the two-point conversion and game-winning points.
Smith, who had 152 yards rushing and another 95 receiving, was untouched as he hit the goal line.
H-SC started on its own 39 on what proved to be the final drive of the game and advanced to the SU 46, but saw quarterback Nash Nance' pass fall incomplete at the goal line as time expired.
Nance threatened to blow the Hornets out in the first quarter, throwing for 212 yards and two TDs on nine completions in 12 attempts.
However, in an omen of things to come, the Tigers failed on both PATs (trying for two each time) on their opening two scores.
H-SC later missed a conventional try on its touchdown in the third quarter.
Shenandoah began its comeback with a Smith touchdown, this one 15-yards, at the 8:30 mark of the second and then scored two touchdowns in the third to cut the deficit to 22-20.
The second TD, a Drew Ferguson to Smith 57-yard pass, was followed by a failed two-point attempt.
The two teams then traded TDs, with the Tigers taking a 35-28 lead on a Nance 25-yard run with 2:37 remaining, before the Hornets drove for the game-winning score.
Hampden-Sydney outgained SU 474 to 427 with the Tigers throwing for 328 yards and the Hornets rushing for 236.
SU possessed the ball for 32:27, including 10:39 in the second quarter to help take the H-SC offense out of sync.
Senior Tijun Findley paced the victorious defense with eight tackles. Byron Mitchell had seven solo stops and blocked a punt in the third quarter to set up the Hornets initial second half touchdown.
Shenandoah plays its final road contest next Saturday with a 1:00 game at Randolph-Macon.