Plunk throws season high as #3 Mount Union tops #21 John Carroll


Mount Union rolled past Westminster 48-7 in the regular season opener

UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, Ohio – No. 3 ranked Mount Union scored its second straight road win against a nationally ranked team with a 28-14 win at No. 21 ranked John Carroll in an Ohio Athletic Conference game Saturday at Don Shula Stadium.

Mount Union (3-0, 2-0 OAC) got a season-high 386 passing yards from quarterback Braxton Plunk (Plant City, Fla.) on 41-of-52 passing with four touchdowns. Six months earlier in the spring, Plunk threw for 521 yards against the Blue Streaks (1-2, 1-1 OAC). It also marks the seventh straight game he has thrown for over 300 yards.

Jake Floria threw for 182 yards on 17-of-31 passing for John Carroll.

Mount Union had appeared to hold the Blue Streaks on their first possession, but the punt went off a Raider and gave John Carroll the ball back at the Mount Union 39, but the defense held including a sack by Rossy Moore (Lima / Lima Central Catholic).

The Raiders answered with a 16-play, 92-yard drive as Plunk hit Jaden Manley (Columbus / Bishop Hartley) on a 10-yard strike to make it 7-0.

Again, the Mount Union defense made a play as Josh Jones (Akron / Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary) had his first interception of the year to give the Raiders the back at the JCU 45-yard line. The Raiders turned the turnover into six more points eight plays later as Plunk threw his second TD pass of the day — a two-yarder — to Chase Lawson (Plant City, Fla. / Lakeland Christian). After the Nick Deack (Alliance) extra point, it was 14-0 Mount Union with 14 minutes to go in the second quarter.

John Carroll then got on the board as Jake Floria threw a 33-yard touchdown pass to Brennan Fugh to bring the Blue Streaks within a score, 14-7, with 8:34 left before halftime.

The Raiders missed a 35-yard field goal and the Blue Streaks went three-and-out before Mount Union got the ball back with just over two minutes to go. Plunk engineered a nine-play drive and finished it with his third touchdown pass, this time a 14-yarder to Ulice Gillard (Orlando, Fla. / Lake Nona), and it was 21-7 at the break.

It looked like Mount Union was going to tack on another touchdown in the first drive of the second half before Nate Leopold intercepted a pass in the JCU end zone. The Raider defense forced a three-and-out after the turnover and three plays later Plunk threw a 44-yard touchdown pass to Wayne Ruby (Miami, Fla. / Flanagan) and the Raiders pushed the lead to 28-7 with 10:33 left in third quarter.

Floria and Fugh found each other again midway through the fourth quarter and John Carroll closed the gap to 28-14.

Mount Union returns home to host Otterbein for homecoming and alumni weekend next Saturday, Oct. 2 at 1:30 p.m. at Mount Union Stadium.


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