Time of Poss.
GREENVILLE, Pa. – The Thiel Tomcats suffered a hard-fought 32-30 loss to the Saint Vincent Bearcats Saturday night in their home opener at Alumni Stadium.
Trailing 32-23 midway through the fourth quarter, the Tomcats embarked on a 10-play drive that covered 82 yards in 5:24 and ended with a 19-yard touchdown pass from Ryan Radke to DeShawon Bracy. Chris Rosales added the extra point, and the Tomcats trailed by just two points with 3:55 remaining in regulation.
Unfortunately for the Tomcats, the Bearcats successfully ran out the remaining 3:55 in nine plays on the ensuing possession to earn the win in the non-conference contest.
After the two teams traded touchdowns early in the game, the Bearcats surged ahead 20-7 on a pair of one-yard touchdown runs by Shavonta Craft. The two teams went on to exchange field goals. Chris Rosales booted a 31-yarder with 9:18 left in the second quarter while Sam Elliott made his kick from 30-yards with 3:49 remaining in the half.
The Tomcats dominated the remainder of the second quarter. Bracy caught a 37-yard touchdown lob down the far sideline before Payton Hicks dove in from a yard out with 25 seconds remaining to force a 23-23 tie. However, after Hicks scored, Rosales' extra point was blocked and returned 98 yards by Damon Black to put two crucial points on the scoreboard for the Bearcats.
Craft scored what would turn out to be the eventual game-winning touchdown for the Bearcats on a 10-yard run early in the third quarter.
Radke completed 13-of-26 passes to seven different receivers. He threw for 219 yards and two touchdown passes. Radke also led the Tomcats with 114 rushing yards on 13 carries. Nick Barca added 62 yards on 22 totes
Eugene Bailey led the Tomcats with 103 yards receiving on six receptions. Bracy caught two passes, both for touchdowns, for 56 yards.
Bearcat Derek Stewart completed 20-of-31 passes for 225 yards. He threw one touchdown pass and two interceptions. D.J. Oceant-Kelly and Damon Black recorded six catches apiece for Saint Vincent for 84 and 75 yards, respectively.
Craft led Saint Vincent on the ground with 111 yards on 24 carries. He also scored three touchdowns.
Linebacker Tyron Bynum led Thiel on defense with 13 tackles, 2.5 of which were behind the line of scrimmage. Trey Andrews and John Barkley each intercepted a pass.
The Tomcats (1-1) will open up Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) play on Saturday when they host the Bethany Bison at Alumni Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m.