Duquesne Comes Back for 24-16 Win over UD

Duquesne University's football team grabbed a 24-16 come-from-behind victory over Dayton Saturday afternoon at Rooney Field.

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Dayton hit a pair of second half field goals that broke a 10-10 half time tie with 10:38 left in the game. The Flyers had held Duquesne to 22 yards on offense at that point.

But Coach Jerry Schmitt's offense came out ready to play on the next series. Using a no-huddle offense, DU marched 72 yards to go up 17-16 on a Connor Dixon to Alex Roberson 11-yard touchdown pass capping a seven-play drive that took just 2:19.

Dayton got the ball with 8:01 on the clock at their own 27-yard line. The Flyers moved the ball to the Duquesne 47. At fourth and two UD, which had attempted two fourth down plays earlier, decided to punt with about six minutes to go, looking for their defense to give them another chance to get on the scoreboard.

Only, Tyler Scruggs blocked Nick Glavin's punt giving DU the ball at Dayton's 43. The Dukes kept the ball on the ground, again for seven plays, and scored on Dixon's one-yard keeper with just 1:24 left.

Dayton quarterback Rob Florian attempted to connect on a long pass downfield on the first play from scrimmage. But Akeem Moore intercepted the throw with 78 seconds left in the game. Dixon took a knee twice to run out the clock.

The Dukes scored first on a Dixon to Michael Rasky 42-yard play with less than five minutes gone in the game. Glavin's field goal at 5:46 of the first quarter cut the lead to 7-3. UD went up, 10-7, on Florian's 57-yarder to Justin Watkins midway through the second quarter. Mark Troyan, who had missed two earlier attempts of 40 and 32 yards, hit a 31-yard field goal to knot the score, 10-10, with 4:57 left before the break.

Connor Dixon was 12-of-32 for 230 yards, two TDs and an interception. Cleodis Williams carried 25 times for 103 yards against a Flyer defense that had held it's opponents to 52.7 yards per game. Tight end Sean Bunevich led DU receivers with three catches for 97 yards. Nathan Totino, for the third straight game, led DU's defense with 10 tackles. Bill Poletti had a redzone interception that stopped UD's almost-guaranteed scoring drive with less than a minute to go in the second quarter.

Florian was 27-of-54 for 277 yards and a TD. Ben Shappie carried the ball 16 times for 94 yards. Justin Millio, who was injured at the end of the second quarter and did not return, led UD's receiving corps with seven catches for 55 yards. Tyler Hujik, who replaced Millio, had six for 32 yards.

The 2-1 Dukes complete their three-game homestand next weekend against Northeast Conference defending champion Albany at 1:00 p.m. on Rooney Field. Dayton (3-1) hosts Campbell next Saturday, also at 1:00 p.m.

The Great Danes are playing their fourth-straight Colonial Athletic Association foe in number 12 Delaware at 6:00 p.m. tonight in Newark, Del.

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