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W&L Football Ends Season with Loss at Mount Union

W&L linebacker Jalen Todd
W&L linebacker Jalen Todd

ALLIANCE, Ohio --- The fourth-ranked Mount Union football team opened up a 21-0 first quarter lead and cruised to a 52-0 victory over Washington and Lee in the opening round of the NCAA Division III Playoffs on Saturday afternoon at Mount Union Stadium.
 
The Generals' (8-3) defense forced the Purple Raiders (11-0) into a 3-and-out on the opening series of the game, but the offense couldn't come up with a first down of its own and punted back to UMU.  This time the Purple Raiders drove 70 yards on six plays, taking a 7-0 lead on a 25-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Braxton Plunk to senior wide receiver Derrick Harvey, Jr., with 8:58 left in the first quarter.
 
After another W&L punt on the following possession, Mount Union used just two plays to cover 80 yards and assume a 14-0 lead.  Plunk hooked up with Harvey, Jr., once again, this time for a 48-yard touchdown at the 6:13 mark of the opening quarter.
 
UMU tacked on another score with seven seconds left in the first quarter.  This time Plunk hooked up with senior wide receiver Wayne Ruby, Jr., for a 6-yard touchdown and a 21-0 advantage.
 
Plunk tossed two more touchdown passes in the second quarter, one more to Ruby, Jr., and one to sophomore wide receiver Tyrell Sanders to carry a 35-0 lead into the halftime break.
 
W&L limited the Purple Raiders to just one touchdown in the third quarter and a touchdown and field goal in the fourth quarter for the final margin.
 
Mount Union finished with 533 yards of total offense, while limiting the Generals to 100 total yards.
 
Sophomore quarterback Stephen Murrin (Fort Worth, Texas / Fort Worth Country Day) completed 5-of-6 passes for 65 yards to lead the W&L offense.  Senior running back Josh Breece (Lorton, Va. / Stone Bridge) tallied a team-best 21 yards rushing on 11 carries, while senior running back Coby Kirkland (Duncan, Okla. / Duncan) caught two passes for 29 yards.  First-year linebacker Jalen Todd(Louisville, Ky. / Kentucky Country Day) recorded a game-high 14 tackles and one forced fumble.  Senior linebacker Alex Andros (Fredericksburg, Va. / Courtland) added nine tackles and a pass breakup.
 
Plunk paced the Purple Raiders by completing 27-of-37 passes for 368 yards and five touchdowns.  Harvey, Jr., snared eight passes for 137 yards and two touchdowns, while Ruby, Jr., caught seven passes for 88 yards and two scores.  Senior running back K.J. Redmon had a team-best 75 yards rushing on 11 carries.  On the defensive end, junior lineman Duke Hill posted a team-best seven tackles.
 
With the loss, Washington and Lee has completed its 2021 season.  Mount Union advances to take on Johns Hopkins in the second round.