ST. PAUL, Minn. — Despite scoring two touchdowns in the second half, the Carleton Knights (0-1) dropped their season opener, 17-14, to Macalester College (1-0) on a last-second 37-yard field goal by Michael Abramson. Senior Colby Seyferth (Sr./Banks, Ore./Banks) paced the Knights offense with six catches for 114 yards and a touchdown in his first game action since 2011.
The “Book of Knowledge” has been the take-home trophy in the matchup between Macalester and Carleton since 1998 with Carleton going 13-4 in those contests including victories in the last 11 meetings before this year. These two schools first met in 1898 and the all-time series mark is now 51-9-1 in the Knights’ favor.
Featuring a new-look offense that included five first-time starters, Carleton started the game off slowly as they were held scoreless in the first half. The Knights defense kept the team in the game by surrendering just one first-half touchdown, which came after the Scots gained excellent field position after recovering a second-quarter fumble inside the Carleton 20. Following two handoffs, Macalester quarterback Samson Bialstok ran a quarterback keeper into the endzone to open the scoring.
First-half Interceptions by Zach Heinrich (Sr./Champlin, Minn/Champlin Park) and Dylan Saline (So./Anoka, Minn./Champlin Park) prevented Macalester from adding additional first half points.
The Scots extended the margin to two scores as they marched down the field on a 9-play, 58yard drive to begin the second half. Wide receiver Sam Bordo capped the drive with an18-yard rushing score.
The Knights offense finally found life late in the third quarter as quarterback Zach Creighton (So./Lakeville, Minn./Lakeville North) hit Seyferth on a 63-yard catch and run to put the Knights on the scoreboard. The Knights tied the score with four minutes remaining in the fourth quarter on a Creighton 11-yard scramble. The scoring play capped off a 10-play, 58-yard drive which included catches of 17 and 12 yards by Seyferth.
The game looked to be headed for overtime when Carleton was unable to convert a fourth-down play in Scots territory with less than 0:20 in regulation. However, a 42-yard pass from Bialstok put the Scots within field-goal range with 0:04 to play. Abramson’s first collegiate field-goal attempt snuck through the uprights as time expired to give Macalester its first victory over Carleton in a dozen tries.
Offensively for the Knights, Creighton finished 13-for-19 for 161 yards and a touchdown pass, plus another 56 yards and a score on the ground. Sophomore Chris Madden (Kenosha, Wis./St. Joseph) rushed 18 times for 83 yards and also returned a second-half kickoff 62 yards to put the Knights inside the Scots red zone.
Defensively, Mitch Heflin (Jr./Wayzata, Minn./Wayzata) led the Knights with 14 tackles and 1.5 sacks. Christain Hansen (Sr./ Pleasant Prairie, Wis./St. Joseph) and Pete Boerma (So./Watertown, S.D./Watertown) combined for 1.5 sacks. Dan Cook (Sr./ Inver Grove Heights, Minn./South St. Paul), Joe Cho (Fy./Galithersburg, Md./Poolesville), Heinrich, and Alex Polk (Sr./Crystal Lake, Ill./Crystal Lake Central) each had seven tackles on the day.
Carleton returns to the gridiron next Saturday, Sept. 13 at 1:00 p.m. for its home opener at Laird Stadium against Knox College. The Knights kick off MIAC play the week after by hosting Augsburg College at 1:00 p.m.