Hanover dispatches Beavers with 26 unanswered

Hanover College’s football team scored 26 unanswered points to pull away for a 40-13 victory against Bluffton University (Ohio) in a Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference tilt, Saturday, Oct. 13, in Bluffton, Ohio.

Junior quarterback Dexter Britt (Louisville, Ky.) threw for 262 yards and three touchdowns and also rushed for a pair of scores to lead Hanover to its seventh consecutive win against the Beavers.

The win was the fourth in a row for the Panthers and raised the squad's record to 4-2 overall and 4-0 in the Heartland Conference.

Britt, who has thrown 12 touchdowns during the winning streak, completed 26-34 passes and tossed touchdown passes of five, one and 16 yards.

Senior wide receivers Daniel Passafiume (Louisville, Ky.), Shawn Gibson (Southport, Ind.) and Dwayne Eubanks (Mitchell, Ind.) combined for 18 receptions and three touchdowns.

Passafiume caught 10 balls for 92 yards and a five-yard score. Gibson had seven receptions for 89 yards and a one-yard touchdown, while Eubanks scored on a 16-yard touchdown catch.

Bluffton (4-3; 3-2 HCAC) led 10-0 early in the second period.

The Panthers used a 10-play, 75-yard drive to eventually get on the scoreboard. Passafiume hauled in the five-yard touchdown toss to cut the margin to 10-7 with 8:12 left in the half.

Hanover battled to grab the lead 90 seconds before the horn. The Panthers’ defense forced a fumble deep in Bluffton territory and Britt needed just six plays to hit paydirt - scoring on an eight-yard scamper to thrust the Panthers ahead 14-10 at the break.

Bluffton cut the margin to 14-13 with a 32-yard field goal with 9:16 left in the third quarter.

Hanover then reeled off touchdowns on its next four drives to stretch the advantage to 40-13 and put the game out of reach.

Britt capped a nine-play, 63-yard drive, with a 10-yard dash for a touchdown to give the Panthers a 20-13 lead with 5:35 remaining in the third quarter.

The Panthers’ defense forced Bluffton to punt on its next possession and the offense moved 55 yards on eight plays to increase the lead to 27-13 after Gibson cradled a one-yard lob with 2:05 left in the stanza.

Two minutes later, Hanover forced another punt and, with the aid of a 15-yard face mask penalty, took possession at the Bluffton 39-yardline.Two plays later, Eubanks snagged his only reception of the game in the endzone to nudge the Panthers’ lead to 33-13.

Senior receiver Colton Zeck (Galveston, Ind.) completed Hanover’s scoring with a nine-yard touchdown run with 8:44 left in the contest.

Hanover’s defensive unit limited Bluffton to just 66 rushing yards, swiped a fumble and had two interceptions.

Senior linebacker Andy Dalton (Guilford, Ind.) led the effort with 11 tackles. Junior lineman Ajani Jones (Lauderdale Lakes, Fla.) totaled a career-high eight tackles, including 2.5 sacks, and forced two fumbles.

Junior linebacker Ethan Waltz (Trafalgar, Ind.) and junior defensive back Derrick Worden (Galveston, Ind.) each picked off interceptions.

Hanover’s offense generated 437 yards, with 175 coming on the ground. Britt finished with 12 carries for 64 yards, while sophomore running back Spencer Corrao (New Albany, Ind.) added 62 yards on 17 attempts.

Hanover at Bluffton (Ohio) statistics