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Butler Bulldogs Fall to Drake at The Sellick Bowl

INDIANAPOLIS, IN – The Butler Bulldogs, looking for their first Pioneer Football League win of the season, hosted the Drake Bulldogs on Saturday, September 30 at the Sellick Bowl. The “Battle of the Bulldogs” went in favor of the visiting team as Drake took a 27-16 win over Butler behind 329 yards and two touchdowns from Drake senior QB Grant Kraemer. Drake improves to 3-2 (2-0 PFL) while Butler falls to 2-3 (0-2 PFL) on the season.

“I’m proud of the way we fought,” said Butler Head Coach Jeff Voris. “I thought our guys gave themselves a chance and played their tails off. There’s no question that they are going to play for 60 minutes. They believe in one another and they are going to keep working and the ball will bounce their way. We’ll stay together and keep preparing. We’ll have to have another good week because every team in this league is a battle on Saturday.”

Butler opened the game at its own 35-yard line after the opening kick bounced out of bounds. On 3rd and 6 at the Butler 39, redshirt junior QB Will Marty found junior WR Pace Temple for a gain of 29 yards and a new set of downs at the Drake 32. A nine yard rush by redshirt senior RB Duvante Lane on 3rd and 10 set Butler up with a 4th and 1. The Bulldogs decided to send Marty up the middle for a gain of 2 yards to convert. A false start moved Butler back on 1st and 10 at the Drake 21 before sophomore K Drew Bevelhimer connected on a 32-yard field goal on 4th and 4 to give Butler the early 3-0 lead.

After starting its first drive at its own 35-yard line, a 12-yard pass from Kraemer to senior TE Cole Neary on 3rd and 5 moved the ball to the Butler 48. On 3rd and 9, Kraemer escaped the pressure and rolled left to find junior WR Steve Doran for a gain of 10. A 12-yard Kraemer pass moved Drake to the Butler 25-yard line as Drake continued to a 1st and Goal situation at the Butler 9-yard line after a 5 yard offside penalty on Butler. On 3rd and Goal at the Butler 1 yard line, senior RB Tyler Updegraff punched the ball in for the touchdown. Drake took a 7-3 lead over Butler with 4:55 remaining in the first quarter.

Butler’s second drive started at its own 28-yard line. On 3rd and 5 at the Butler 33, Marty found redshirt sophomore WR James Marbaugh for a gain of 10 yards. On 1st and 10 at the Butler 43, Drake was called on a 15-yard illegal hands to the face penalty that set Butler up at the Drake 42. Lane converted a 3rd and 1 at the Drake 33 with a 7-yard run. Butler turned again to Bevelhimer on 4th and 9 as he connected on 42-yard field goal to bring the score to 7-6 with 0:06 remaining in the first quarter.

After starting Drake’s second drive at its own 28-yard line, Kraemer connected with Doran for an 11-yard gain as time expired in the first quarter. On 2nd and 12, Kramer found sophomore WR Mitch McFarlane for a gain of 25 yards down to the Butler 38. Another pass to McFarlane resulted in a gain of 10 yards before Kramer found Doran for a 28-yard touchdown pass. Drake increased the lead to 14-6 with 13:29 remaining in the first half.

Butler started its next drive at the Butler 35-yard line. On 3rd and 14, Marty found Temple down the right sideline for a gain of 33 yards. Drake was called for a pass interference on the Temple catch, but Butler declined to set the Bulldogs up with 1st and 10 at the Drake 36. A 1st and 10 false start moved the home team back to the Drake 41. Butler decided to go for the new set of downs on 4th and 4 at the Drake 30-yard line, but failed on an incomplete pass and chop-block penalty.

Following the failed 4th down attempt by Butler, Drake took over at its own 30-yard line. Drake continued its march as the Bulldogs converted a 3rd and 1 at its own 39 with a 6-yard pass and a 24-yard pass to McFarlane on the next play. A 19-yard pass moved the ball to the Butler 12 before Kraemer threw a 15-yard touchdown pass on 2nd and 13 to senior TE Connor Ostrander.

Down 21-6 with 7:34 remaining in the first half, Butler was in need of a big play. On 1st and 10 at its own 25, Temple gave Butler a shot in the arm as Marty and Temple connected on a 37-yard catch deep down the right sideline. An 11-yard rush by Lane on 2nd and 10 at the Drake 38 was immediately followed up by a 12-yard Lane rush to move the ball to the Drake 27. On 2nd and 9 at the Drake 14, Marty found the hot hand and connected with Lane for a 12-yard pass. Butler was called for a false start on 2nd and Goal at the Drake 1 yard line before a pitch play for redshirt junior RB Anthony Scaccia resulted in a six-yard score. The Butler touchdown cut the Drake lead down to 21-13 with 3:59 remaining before halftime.

After an illegal block in the back call against Drake, Drake started at its own 15-yard line. A Kraemer pass resulting in a loss of eight yards led to a 3rd and 15 at the Drake 10-yard line. But Butler was unable to make the stop as Kraemer connected with Ostrander for 19 yards to the Drake 29. Faced with a 3rd and 10 at the Drake 41, Butler brought the heat and came up with a sack. But a roughing the passer penalty on Butler negated the sack and moved the ball 15 yards to the Butler 44. On 2nd and 10, Butler was called for a pass interference that advanced Drake another 15 yards to the Butler 29. But the Butler defense held strong and forced the Drake kicking team to attempt a 46-yard field goal. The kick was no good and set Butler up with a 1st and 10 at its own 29-yard line with 0:36 remaining in the half. Butler ran out the clock to bring the game to halftime. Drake led Butler, 21-13.

Photo: Butler Athletics/Butler Redshirt Junior RB Anthony Scaccia

Drake opened the second half with the ball at its own 25-yard line and continued with its aerial assault. A 14-yard pass on 2nd and 10 at the Drake 41 moved the ball to the Butler 45-yard line before a 15-yard pass on first down brought Drake to the Butler 30. Drake gained eight yards on a 3rd and 4 pass to move the ball to the Butler 16. Drake advanced the ball to the Butler five on a three-yard gain on 3rd and 2. Drake was called for a false start on 3rd and Goal at the Butler five. A 3rd and Goal pass moved the ball to the Butler 2-yard line as Drake converted a 19-yard field goal to increase the lead to 24-13.

Butler’s first possession of the second half started on its own 35-yard line after the kickoff rolled out of bounds. But the Bulldogs were forced to punt after a three-and-out. It was the first punt of the day for either team. The Butler defense held Drake to a three-and-out and a punt on the next posession as a 3rd and 13 screen pass fell short of the chains.

Following the Drake punt, Butler took over at its own 32-yard line. Marty found Marbaugh on 3rd and 4 for eight yards and a first down to the Butler 46. A five-yard rush by Lane on 3rd and 3 moved the ball to the Drake 42. A Drake sack on 2nd and 3 resulted in a loss of nine, but once again, Marty found Temple on 3rd and 12 for a gain of 16 yards. Butler was unable to connect on a 3rd and 7 pass and Drew Bevelhimer drilled a 43-yard field goal on 4th down. The three points brought the score to 24-16 in favor of Drake with 1:24 remaining in the third quarter.

Drake started at its own 25-yard line and picked up an 18-yard gain on a broken play and lateral pass by Kraemer. The big gain was immediately followed by a 15-yard pass to the Butler 37-yard line. After the third quarter break, a false start on Drake set the Bulldogs up with 2nd and 12 at the Butler 39-yard line before Butler redshirt senior DT Chad Burdo found his way to the quarterback for a 10-yard sack. On 3rd and 22, Drake ripped off a big run that set up a 4th and 9. On 4th down, Drake picked up 9 yards on a pass, just enough for the first down. A 16-yard pass on 2nd and 8 moved the chains to the Butler 9. On 1st and Goal, senior RB/DB Jabari Butler fumbled the ball on a five-yard loss and Butler senior DE Connor Andras recovered. Following the Butler fumble recovery, the Bulldogs took control at their own 12, but were forced to punt on a three-and-out.

Drake started its next drive at its own 42-yard line. The Drake march continued as the visiting Bulldogs quickly found themselves in scoring territory. Drake converted a 4th and 4 at the Butler 28 with a seven-yard pass to junior WR Devin Cates. On 4th and 10 at the Butler 21, Drake called on the field goal team and tacked on three points to extend the lead to 27-16 with 5:32 remaining in the game.

Butler started its next possession on its own 25-yard line. A 3rd and 7 pass from Marty was intercepted by Drake senior CB Terry Wallen and returned for seven yards to give Drake a 1st and 10 at the Butler 28. On 3rd and 4 at the Butler 22, Drake was stopped short on the run and called for a false start on 4th and 1. On 4th and 6, Drake missed a 40-yard field goal attempt.

Following the missed field goal, Butler set up shop at its own 24 with 3:49 remaining in the game. Butler was called for a false start that turned a 3rd and 3 into a 3rd and 8, but Butler was able to convert as Marty found Marbaugh for 10 yards. On 3rd and 10 at the Butler 36, Marty found Temple for 10 yards and a first down. A Drake sack for 11 yards set the Bulldogs up with 2nd and 21 at their own 35. Drake found its way to Marty again for a sack, resulting in a 3rd and 31. On 4th and 31, Marty escaped the pressure and heaved a deep jump ball which was caught by Butler, but the big play was killed by a Butler holding penalty. A 4th and 41 heave from Marty to Temple down the right sideline fell incomplete.

With 1:41 remaining in the game, Drake took over at the Butler 15 and kneeled out the clock.

Butler redshirt junior QB Will Marty completed 15-of-32 attempts for 197 yards, and one interception. Sophomore K Drew Bevelhimer made all three of his field goal attempts and moved over 100 career points. Redshirt senior RB Duvante Lane had 70 yards on 16 carries.

Drake senior QB Grant Kraemer completed 27-of-40 attempts for 329 yards and two touchdowns.

Redshirt sophomore S Luke Sennett had a game-high 10 tackles to lead Butler. Senior S Isaak Newhouse added nine. Butler senior DE Connor Andras had a fumble recovery, redshirt senior DT Chad Burdo had a sack and two tackles for loss and redshirt senior DE Josh Willis had two tackles for loss.

Butler returns to action Saturday (Oct. 7), traveling to Morehead State for a 1 p.m. PFL match-up. The Bulldogs return to the Sellick Bowl the following week, hosting Jacksonville.

Chris Fultz is a Senior Writer for the Indiana Sports Report and is recognized as an accredited member of the media by Butler Athletics and has full media access. Follow @CafultzISR and the @IndySportsRep on Twitter.

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