Football - Sat, Oct. 6, 2007
CHICAGO - In a battle of NAIA powers, #2 Saint Xavier University falls short to #4 Ohio Dominican University on homecoming Saturday. These two Mid-States Football Association (MSFA) Mideast league foes squared off for a classic gridiron battle at Bruce R. Deaton Memorial Field. The Cougars were led by Billy Yeo (Matterson, Ill./ Western Michigan/ Rich South) who went 29-for-45 for 306 yards, three touchdown passes, one rushing touchdown and one pick. Most of his balls were thrown to Jim Doherty (Evergreen Park, Ill./Evergreen Park), who caught nine balls for 110 yards and one score. Doherty's longest catch was for 44 yards. On the defensive side of the ball, Joe Miller (Chicago, Ill/ Gordon Tech) and Sean Kenney (Orland Park, Ill/ Stagg) both had five solo tackles and two assists.

The Cougars came out roaring as they put up 21 points with Yeo throwing a three-yard score to Bill McKeon (Joliet, Ill/Joliet Catholic), Yeo rushing for a score and Yeo hitting Mike Maher (Plainfield, Ill/Providence Catholic) for a 68-yard touchdown pass. The defense held the Panthers to only 25 yards before they put a field goal on the board early in the second quarter. On the next possession, the Cougars fumbled the ball and gave the battle of field possession to the Panthers. They would go on to score a touchdown and another field goal before the half making it 21-13 in favor of SXU.

The Cougars received the ball in the second half, but couldn't move it and went three and out. ODU's next possesion was a game-breaker as the Panthers scored on a 53-yard pass play and converted the two-point play to even up the game. The Panthers would score two more touchdowns in the quarter to pull ahead 35-21.

In the beginning of the fourth quarter, the Panthers were driving again when Shane Franken (Carol Stream, Ill/Driscoll Catholic) picked of ODU quarterback Cris Reisert and took it 53 yards to the house for six. After a couple of penalties, Shane Longest (Wilmington, Ill/Wilmington) missed the extra point making it 35-27. On the next Cougar possession, Yeo and Doherty hooked up for a 28-yard touchdown pass. The two-point conversion was no good making it 35-33 in favor of ODU. The Cougar defense held strong and forced a punt. Panther punter Mitch Croy fumbled the snap and the Cougars set up shop at the ODU 14-yardline. After a couple of runs, Juaquin Rodriguez (Merrillville, Ind/Andrean) punched it in from the one-yardline. Yeo threw a pass to McKeon to get the two points to make it 41-33 in favor of the Cougars.

On the Panthers following possession, they drove 80 yards for the score to make it 42-41 in favor of ODU. The Cougars received the ball at their own 20 with 55 seconds left in the game. Yeo drove the team to the ODU 34-yardline where Longest would be just wide right on his 51-yard field goal attempt to end the game 42-41 in favor of Ohio Dominican University.

Next week Saint Xavier (5-1 overall) will welcome #24 Urbana University (Ohio) for another MSFA Mideast showdown. Game time is 1 p.m. at Bruce R. Deaton Memorial Field on the Chicago campus of Saint Xavier University.