Close Call

Joe Wright returns an interception in the third quarter
Joe Wright returns an interception in the third quarter

ALBION, Mich. – In previous years, Albion College would have made the play to win a close game against Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association rival Hope College.

But the 2016 campaign has been a challenge for the Britons. Albion was unable to gain two yards on fourth down with a minute remaining and it went on to take a 16-13 loss on a sunny afternoon on the Schmidt-Fraser Field inside Sprankle-Sprandel Stadium.

Doug Freeman scored on runs of 1 and 4 yards in the second half as Albion rallied from a 16-0 deficit.

Neither team was able to gain a first down after Freeman's second TD with 11:23 left until Briton quarterback Sam Blanzy found his brother, Brian, for a 18-yard gain to the Hope 37 on fourth and 8.

Albion completed a pass to the Hope 2 on the next play, but it was called back on a holding penalty. The Britons were unable to overcome the penalty, however, Freeman's impressive individual effort on fourth down came up short because the Britons had to make up for a low snap.

Blanzy completed 32 passes for 250 yards. Tyler Sykes hauled in 16 passes  for 76 yards.

Outside of a 54-yard touchdown run by Brandan Campbell, the Albion defense played admirably. Darren Ford made three field goals, including two from 46 yards, the longest in Hope history.

Hope finished with 333 yards of offense. Linebacker Jose Rodriguez wrapped up 13 tackles, Richard Annorat had 10 and Austin Lynn had nine, including a sack.

Albion will complete the season at Kalamazoo College next Saturday.