Alma, Mich. - The Alma College football team fell 28-13 to Olivet College on Saturday (Nov. 9) evening. The loss drops Alma to 5-4 on the season while Olivet improves to 8-1.
The game was dedicated to Chris O'Connor, an Alma College graduate and football player as well as a Marine veteran, who passed away in a helicopter accident in 1989. The victory bell was renamed in his honor.
The Comets benefited from four Scot turnovers, one of which was a 45-yard interception returned for a touchdown. Alma's lone trip to the end zone was late in the fourth quarter when Ryan Stevens (Lowell, Mich. / Lowell) found Chase Hinkle (Concord, Mich. / Concord) for a 33-yard score. Zach Clements (Clarkston, Mich. / Brandon) had two field goals of 28 and 30 yards.
Both teams struggled to maintain momentum in the first half. Olivet scored a touchdown on the game's opening drive and Alma responded with a field goal but the next six drives all went for fewer than five plays. The next score wasn't until the middle of the second quarter when Olivet's Kaleb Jarrett found Noah McMinn for a four-yard touchdown on 4th & goal.
The Scots got the ball to begin the second half, but Stevens threw a pick-six on the fifth play of the drive. Alma got three points back on their next possession thanks to a Clements' field goal.
Stevens threw for 207 yards in the contest on 20-of-38 passing. He also had 13 carries for 40 yards. Austin Spratling (Grand Rapids, Mich. / Wyoming Kelloggsville) led the rushing attack with 64 yards on 10 carries. Chase Hinkle (Concord, Mich. / Concord) led all players with eight receptions for 116 yards and one touchdown; the yards and receptions are both season-highs.
Zeke Ramirez (Homer, Mich. / Homer) had a game-high 13 tackles, two of which were tackles for loss. Colin Smith also had two TFLs. Thor Soffredine (Traverse City, Mich. / Traverse City West) has 10 tackles and one fumble recovery.
Alma wraps up the regular season against Finlandia on Saturday (Nov. 16). Kickoff is set for noon.