APPLETON, Wis. — The Illinois College football team jumped out to a 17-point lead at the half Saturday and went on to a 40-15 Midwest Conference victory over Lawrence University on Ron Roberts Field at the Banta Bowl.
Illinois College quarterback Drew Chance went 19-for-29 for 258 yards, three touchdowns and one interception. Austin Ellsworth caught nine passes for 181 yards and a score for the Blueboys (2-2, 1-1 MWC). Jason Barbour led the Illinois College ground game with 17 carries for 104 yards and a touchdown.
Quarterback Ryan Butterfield was 8-for-14 for 110 yards and a touchdown for Lawrence (1-2, 0-1). He also led the Vikings with three carries for 36 yards. Backup quarterback Philip Santiago played most of the second half and went 5-for-10 for 28 yards, and he ran four times for 32 yards.
Lawrence rookie return man Terrell Myers posted a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter. It is the second-longest kickoff return in Lawrence history, eclipsed only by the 102-yard return by College Football Hall of Famer Scott Reppert vs. UW-Oshkosh in 1982.
Linebackers Jake Gostisha and Hunter Adams had big days for the Vikings. Gostisha had 14 tackles, including a tackle for loss, and his third interception of the season. Adams tied for game-high honors with 14 tackles.
Mixed in among a spate of penalties to start the game, Illinois College moved 76 yards in 14 plays for the game’s first touchdown. Chance then hit Ellsworth for a 75-yard scoring pass on the Blueboys’ next drive for a 14-0 lead.
The Blueboys led 17-0 when the Vikings went on an 81-yard scoring drive. Butterfield hit Trevor Spina on a wide receiver screen, and Spina cut across the field and went 61 yards for the touchdown to cut the lead to 17-7.
Illinois College ended the half on a 14-play, 75-yard drive, with Barbour scoring from a yard out, to grab a 24-7 lead at the half.
The Blueboys scored on their first drive of the second half for a 30-7 lead, and Zack DeWitt added a 42-yard field goal for a 33-7 edge early in the fourth quarter.
DeWitt’s kickoff went to the goal line where it was caught by Dan Rothbauer, who handed it to Myers. Myers cut left and then right and streaked to the end zone to trim the lead to 33-15 after the two-point conversion.