INDIANAPOLIS, IN – The Butler Bulldogs, seeking their first win of the season after a tough loss against the Indiana State Sycamores, wasted no time scoring against the Franklin Grizzlies under the lights at the Butler Bowl on Saturday. Matt Shiltz led the Bulldogs in their opening drive to a touchdown and showed no signs of slowing down, leading Butler to 31 unanswered points. The Bulldogs cruised to a 41-7 win against the Grizzles behind a 4 touchdown performance from Shiltz and an overall impressive team outing.
After a solid 3-and-out from the defense during Franklin’s opening drive of the game, Butler redshirt senior QB Matt Shiltz led the Bulldogs to the endzone with a 16 yard touchdown strike to senior WR Marquese Martin-Hayes in their opening drive. Shiltz continued his assault on the Franklin defense, connecting with Brandon Collins for a 23 yard touchdown pass, scoring on a 2 yard rush and hitting freshman WR Pace Temple for a 7 yard touchdown pass. It was the first career reception as a Bulldogs for Pace Temple. Matt Shiltz led the Butler offense to a score on 6-of-12 drives in only 3 quarters of play.
“Any time you can go out there and have a full team effort in a game, especially under the lights at home, my first home game, give the fans something to cheer about, it’s a great feeling,” said Butler starting QB Matt Shiltz after returning home from a season ending injury last season.
Matt Shiltz finished with 189 yards passing on 16-of-26 attempts (61.5%) for three touchdowns and one interception. Shiltz also had 83 yards on 9 carries for an average of 9.2 yards with a long of 22 yards and a two yard touchdown rush.
“He’s the guy that everything kind of works around on offense,” said Butler Head Coach Jeff Voris of starting QB Matt Shiltz. “He does a great job as far as the leadership and the preparation and the guys believe in and trust when he is out there. He gets us in and out of plays and distributes the ball, so he is important to what we are doing.”
After finishing a third quarter drive that led into the beginning of the fourth, redshirt junior QB Malcolm Weaver entered the game and picked up right where Shiltz left off. Weaver only connected on 1-of-3 attempts, but he had the longest scoring play of the game with a 62 yard touchdown pass to redshirt junior WR Danny Cotter. Weaver also added 20 yards rushing on two attempts for an average of 10 yards and a long of 17. Weaver’s touchdown pass really put the cap on the game as the Bulldogs went up 41-7 following the score.
Marquese Martin-Hayes led the Bulldogs with a team high 5 receptions for 36 yards and a TD. Redshirt junior WR Danny Cotter added two receptions for 69 yards and a 62 yard touchdown pass, the longest receiving play of the game. Freshman WR Pace Temple and redshirt junior WR Brandon Collins both hauled in a touchdown.
The Butler defense didn’t allow a Franklin score until midway through the 3rd quarter. Franklin sophomore QB Chase Burton ran for a 1 yard touchdown run at the 6:52 mark. Franklin didn’t score again until the game was already well decided late in the 4th quarter. Sophomore RB Tanner Kameda ran in for a 28 yard touchdown run with 2:49 left in the game.
The Bulldogs forced four Franklin fumbles and recovered all four. Butler redshirt senior LB Jordan Massey led the Bulldogs with 6.5 tackles including 5 of the solo variety. Junior DE Josh Willis recorded one of the Butler forced fumbles, had a team high 1.5 sacks for nine yards and tied a team high 1.5 tackles for loss with redshirt junior LB Sean Horan. It was the second consecutive game with Willis recording 1.5 sacks. Sophomore LB Chris Boudoures, freshman DL Nik Kessel and senior DL Adam Rodgers had the other three forced fumbles while sophomore LB Ethan Brunhofer, sophomore DB Isaak Newhouse, redshirt junior DT Jordan Ransone and redshirt sophomore DT Chad Burdo had the four fumble recoveries. After giving up 303 net yards rushing to Indiana State last week, the Bulldogs limited Franklin to only 89 total yards on the ground.
“We took advantage of our opportunities,” said Butler Head Coach Jeff Voris. “We scored early and both sides of the ball fed off of each other, which was important. To start fast after last week and to get the lead, especially against a team like Franklin, they can score quickly and score in bunches, the great start was crucial for us.”
Franklin sophomore QB Chase Burton completed 30-of-40 passing attempts for 191 yards. Burton scored on a 1 yard rushing touchdown while sophomore RB Tanner Kameda scored the other touchdown for the Grizzlies on one rush for 28 yards.
Redshirt sophomore RB Sam Schrader finished with 51 yards on 11 carries for an average of 4.6 yards and a long of 15. Senior backup Rico Watson finished with 9 yards on 7 carries for an average of 1.3 yards and a long of four.
Senior kicker Jonathan Treloar also connected on two field goals during the game. Treloar hit his first from 28 yards in the first quarter and another from 23 yards in the third quarter.
Butler held a 451-294 advantage in total yards. The turnovers led to short fields and quick scores for Butler, as the first half touchdown drives were 2:23, 1:46, 2:33, and 1:39. That sent the Bulldogs into the half with a 31-0 advantage and put the game out of reach.
The Bulldogs return to action Saturday, Sept. 19, making the trip to Taylor for a 7 p.m. contest. Butler returns home on Sept. 26 for a Homecoming match-up with Campbell.
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.
Chris Fultz is a Senior Writer and the Butler Athletics beat writer for the Indiana Sports Report. Chris Fultz is recognized as an accredited member of the media by Butler University Athletics and has full media access.
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