The Kenyon football team opened its NCAC regular season this past weekend on the road against Wittenberg University. Despite a strong start, the Owls ultimately fell to the Tigers, putting their record at 0-3 (0-1 NCAC).
Kenyon came out of the gate with strong defense, holding Wittenberg to only seven points in the first quarter. Although the Owls were unable to capitalize on any of their drives in the first quarter, they opened the second quarter with a 20-yard field goal from Tyler Bell ’27 that capped off a 65-yard drive, making the score 7-3. Unfortunately for Kenyon, the Tigers quickly took control after that, scoring 28 unanswered points before halftime.
The third quarter was not any kinder to Kenyon, as Wittenberg increased its scoring run to 42 straight points, dominating play on the ground and in the air. After conceding yet another touchdown at the beginning of the fourth quarter to bring the score to 56-3, the Owls finally found some momentum. With a little under 10 minutes remaining in the game, Kenyon scored its first touchdown of the day, a 60-yard reception and run by running back Jordon Benjamin ’26. With a little more confidence under their belts, the Owls were able to secure another touchdown before the game ended. Drake Lewis ’25 found the endzone after a three-yard run, his third rushing touchdown of the season. Kenyon fell by a final score of 56-17.
The Owls’ passing game struggled, with quarterback Park Penrod ’25 throwing for 97 yards with an interception in his first start of the season. Lewis led the team’s ground game, putting up 63 of Kenyon’s 124 rushing yards. Defensively, first-year defensive tackle Dominic Simpson ’27 led the Owls with 11 tackles (six solo). Despite the loss, the young team is working to get stronger and more consistent. In an email to the Collegian, Simpson discussed the lessons that the team took away from last weekend: “We have to play a full four quarters of football; when we come out swinging we have to maintain that momentum.”
The Owls will look to get their first win of the season on Saturday when they take on the College of Wooster on the road. “As a team we are itching for a dub and playing with passion and intensity is key for us this week,” Simpson said.