/seasons/2013/contrib/201311169bcfw7

Wittenberg Completes Run To NCAC Title With 56-0 Win Over Allegheny

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Tigers Complete Run To NCAC Title With 56-0 Win Over Allegheny

Photo by Erin Pence

Noah Johanson hands off to JaVanh Sanders, who rushed for a career-high 194 yards in a 56-0 win over Allegheny.

Photo by Erin Pence

SPRINGFIELD, Ohio - The Wittenberg Tigers put the finishing touches on their eighth outright North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) championship with a dominating 56-0 victory over visiting Allegheny.

The 2013 title is Wittenberg's 12th overall since joining the NCAC in 1989, and its fourth in the last five years. The Tigers had already secured the league's automatic berth in the NCAA Division III Tournament with a win a week earlier over Wabash, but the shutout of the Gators ensured Wittenberg plenty of momentum heading into the Big Dance.

The day started with recognition of one of the largest senior classes in Wittenberg football history as more than 30 players lined the track in front of the stands with family and friends. The Tigers then proceeded to ambush Allegheny, which dropped to 0-10 overall and 0-9 in the NCAC, for 49 first-half points.

Senior quarterback Reed Florence (South Charleston, Ohio/Southeastern) continued his record-breaking season with two rushing touchdowns two passing scores before hanging up his helmet midway through the second quarter. Sophomore running back Jimmy Dehnke (Canton, Ohio/Massillon Jackson) added a 14-yard touchdown run, senior tight end Stephen Zumdick (Erlanger, Ky./Dixie Heights) caught touchdown passes from Florence and sophomore Zack Jenkins (Frostproof, Fla./Frostproof), senior wide receiver Desi Kirkman (Lima, Ohio/Central Catholic) hauled in a TD pass, and senior tailback JaVanh Sanders (Las Vegas, Nev./Centennial) rounded out the first-half blitz with a 71-yard TD scamper.

It was the first of two scoring runs for Sanders, and it was the longest run from scrimmage of the season for the Tigers as a team. He carried the load for much of the second half, finishing with a team season-high of 194 yards on 18 carries.

Florence was efficient, completing 10-of-12 passes for 119 yards. Senior quarterback Noah Johanson (Medina, Ohio/Medina) added 7-of-8 passing for 88 yards and Jenkins went 2-for-3 for 37 yards. Nine different players caughts at least one pass in the game, led by sophomore wide receiver Zach Culvahouse (Fort Myers, Fla./Estero) with five catches for 63 yards.

A host of Tigers got into the act on the other side of the ball as well, but it was freshman defensive lineman Brady Vanover (Maineville, Ohio/Kings) who made two of the game's biggest plays. He blocked a first-half punt to set up one score and he made his first career interception to set up another.

Senior linebacker Spencer Leno (Massillon, Ohio/Washington) led the Tiger defense, which posted its third shutout of the season, with five tackles. Wittenberg has held five of its 10 regular season opponents to nine points or less.

Ranked 10th in the latest American Football Coaches Association poll and 11th by d3football.com, Wittenberg heads into the NCAA Division III Tournament with a record of 9-1, including nine straight wins since opening the season with a 49-24 loss to NCAA Division I Butler. The Tigers, ranked fourth in the latest North Region rankings, will learn their postseason fate on Sunday.

First round NCAA Division III Tournament games will take place at noon Saturday, Nov. 23. The Tigers have a 20-13 record in 15 all-time national tournament appearances.

Oct. 20: All times Eastern
Final
at Johns Hopkins 52, Gettysburg 0
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Oct. 21: All times Eastern
Final
at Framingham State 29, Westfield State 14
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Moravian 20, at Juniata 17
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at Salve Regina 41, Endicott 14
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Final
at Thomas More 63, St. Vincent 13
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Final
at Union 28, Hobart 23
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at Hamilton 27, Colby 24
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at Christopher Newport 27, William Paterson 19
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at Ithaca 35, St. John Fisher 10
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at Allegheny 44, Kenyon 35
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SUNY-Maritime 21, at Mount Ida 13
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Middlebury 43, at Bates 14
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at Springfield 68, Catholic 20
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at Amherst 21, Wesleyan 17
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at Trinity (Conn.) 63, Bowdoin 14
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Husson 48, at Gallaudet 21
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Wabash 35, at Oberlin 21
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at Utica 34, Buffalo State 12
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Ohio Northern 7, at Muskingum 6
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Final
at Frostburg State 62, Montclair State 3
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at Wesley 34, Rowan 3
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at Stevenson 26, Albright 23
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Wittenberg 52, at DePauw 6
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at Albion 31, Alma 28
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at Guilford 45, Shenandoah 20
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Plymouth State 40, at Massachusetts Maritime 14
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Final
Wooster 58, at Hiram 25
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Washington and Lee 36, at Hampden-Sydney 6
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at Anna Maria 36, Alfred State 34
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Bridgewater 31, at Emory and Henry 23
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at FDU-Florham 49, Wilkes 31
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Lebanon Valley 17, at Misericordia 0
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at St. Lawrence 36, Rochester 14
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RPI 30, at Alfred 15
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at Curry 46, Nichols 16
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at Salisbury 42, Southern Virginia 0
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Ferrum 27, at Brevard 24
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Randolph-Macon 63, at Apprentice 14
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at Susquehanna 21, Ursinus 14
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Cortland 34, at Morrisville State 20
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at Trine 50, Hope 14
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Trinity (Texas) 27, at Sewanee 21
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Wartburg 41, at Luther 16
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at Franklin and Marshall 56, Dickinson 0
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Tufts 21, at Williams 13
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Mount Union 66, at Wilmington 7
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MIT 30, at Coast Guard 21
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at Norwich 24, Maine Maritime 22
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at Marietta 44, Heidelberg 21
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Franklin 29, at Rose-Hulman 22
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John Carroll 48, at Capital 21
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at Manchester 28, Bluffton 21
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Final
Mount St. Joseph 71, at Anderson 27
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UW-Whitewater 20, at UW-River Falls 7
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Kean 26, at TCNJ 3
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at LaGrange 59, Greensboro 10
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at Worcester State 45, Mass-Dartmouth 40
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Muhlenberg 40, at McDaniel 13
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Final
Western New England 45, at Becker 0
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Final
at Maryville (Tenn.) 35, Methodist 14
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Adrian 36, at Kalamazoo 22
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Final
Denison 31, at Ohio Wesleyan 20
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Final - OT
at Washington and Jefferson 34, Westminster (Pa.) 33
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Final
Berry 37, at Millsaps 22
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Final
at Benedictine 43, Olivet 37
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Final
Birmingham-Southern 31, at Austin 24
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at Mary Hardin-Baylor 45, Belhaven 7
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at UW-Stout 23, UW-Stevens Point 17
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Final
Eureka 37, at MacMurray 20
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at Illinois Wesleyan 13, Carthage 10
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Nebraska Wesleyan 14, at Buena Vista 13
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Lakeland 48, at Wisconsin Lutheran 0
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Final
at Aurora 28, Rockford 21
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at Concordia-Chicago 37, Concordia (Wis.) 17
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Final
at St. Olaf 29, Carleton 26
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at St. John's 41, Gustavus Adolphus 17
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at Concordia-Moorhead 42, Augsburg 20
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Final
St. Thomas 84, at Hamline 0
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Final
Westminster (Mo.) 24, at Greenville 14
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Final
at Loras 44, Coe 38
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Monmouth 61, at Cornell 10
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Final
Wheaton (Ill.) 56, at North Park 0
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Final
Northwestern (Minn.) 30, at Martin Luther 14
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Hardin-Simmons 33, at Texas Lutheran 30
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Final
at Lake Forest 70, Grinnell 6
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Final
at Millikin 56, Carroll 35
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Final
at Macalester 47, Ripon 31
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at St. Norbert 38, Lawrence 6
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Final
St. Scholastica 49, at Crown 21
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at Iowa Wesleyan 24, Minnesota-Morris 17
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UW-Platteville 34, at UW-Eau Claire 14
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Final
at WPI 41, Merchant Marine 7
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Final
at Centre 42, Rhodes 35
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Final
Hanover 49, at Earlham 14
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Final
at Chicago 55, Beloit 12
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Final
UW-Oshkosh 42, at UW-La Crosse 28
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Final - OT
at Dubuque 28, Simpson 27
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Final
at North Central (Ill.) 54, Augustana 2
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Final
at East Texas Baptist 68, Louisiana College 35
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Final
at Brockport 45, Hartwick 0
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Final
Western Connecticut 27, at Bridgewater State 20
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Final
Chapman 38, at La Verne 21
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Final
Pacific 17, at Lewis and Clark 7
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Final
Pacific Lutheran 27, at Willamette 14
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at Whitworth 38, Puget Sound 23
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Final
Redlands 42, at Claremont-Mudd-Scripps 25
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at Linfield 12, George Fox 6
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Sul Ross State 52, at Howard Payne 15
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at Castleton 17, Dean 14
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N.C. Wesleyan 21, at Averett 15
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at Otterbein 37, Baldwin Wallace 29
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Case Western Reserve 45, at Geneva 7
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Carnegie Mellon 42, at Thiel 10
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at Illinois College 23, Knox 13
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at Cal Lutheran 60, Whittier 34
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Cancelled
Occidental at Pomona-Pitzer
Oct. 20: All times Eastern
Final
at Johns Hopkins 52, Gettysburg 0
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Oct. 21: All times Eastern
Final
at Wesley 34, Rowan 3
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Final
at Frostburg State 62, Montclair State 3
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Final
Wittenberg 52, at DePauw 6
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at Springfield 68, Catholic 20
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Final
Wartburg 41, at Luther 16
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Final
Mount Union 66, at Wilmington 7
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Final
at Marietta 44, Heidelberg 21
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Final - OT
at Washington and Jefferson 34, Westminster (Pa.) 33
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Final
Hardin-Simmons 33, at Texas Lutheran 30
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Final
at Mary Hardin-Baylor 45, Belhaven 7
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Final
St. Thomas 84, at Hamline 0
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Final
at St. John's 41, Gustavus Adolphus 17
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Final
at Illinois Wesleyan 13, Carthage 10
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Final
at Concordia-Moorhead 42, Augsburg 20
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Final
Berry 37, at Millsaps 22
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Final
UW-Platteville 34, at UW-Eau Claire 14
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Final
UW-Oshkosh 42, at UW-La Crosse 28
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Final
at North Central (Ill.) 54, Augustana 2
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Final
at Brockport 45, Hartwick 0
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Final
at Linfield 12, George Fox 6
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Final
Case Western Reserve 45, at Geneva 7
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