The Kenyon football team fell to Kalamazoo College 48-16 on Saturday afternoon at McBride Field. The Owls’ record stands at 0-2.
Kenyon went down 12-0 after the first quarter and by the end of the first half was trailing 29-3, with the only points coming from a field goal by kicker Tyler Bell ’27. In the second half, the Owls had more offensive success, as running backs Drake Lewis ’25 and Jordon Benjamin ’26 each scored a touchdown.
That was all the offense Kenyon could generate, as the Owls only racked up 270 yards of total offense throughout the entire game. Quarterback Henry Wendorf ’27 started the game, going 9/24 and throwing for 117 yards and an interception. Park Penrod ’25 also had a chance to lead the offense, passing for 7 yards and rushing for 15 yards.
One of the highlights for Kenyon was wide receiver Charlie Taylor ’27, who caught four passes for 84 yards, including a 42-yard reception, which was the Owls’ longest offensive play of the afternoon. David Livingston ’25 also caught two passes for 12 yards, bringing his team-leading total receptions to 13.
Defensively, the Owls struggled to contain Kalamazoo running back Jon Brunette, who accounted for 117 total yards and two rushing touchdowns. The Hornets garnered 463 yards of total offense and scored a touchdown in every quarter. However, Kenyon was able to have some success against Kalamazoo quarterback Josh Nichols, as the Owls racked up four interceptions: two from defensive back Jackson Belyn ’27, one each from linebacker Thomas Iannuzzi ’24 and defensive back Dominic Simpson ’27. Belyn and Simpson’s interceptions came in the first half, as both teams struggled to keep possession and had a whopping seven combined turnovers. Defensive lineman Andy Melian ’25, who had four tackles through the first two games, said of the Owls’ defensive performance: “We’ve got a lot of work to do if we want to stand a chance against some of the better teams in our league.” Livingston believes the offense has room to improve. “A lot of our struggles were because of our own fault,” he wrote in an email to the Collegian. “[Kalamazoo was] able to make us one dimensional and that definitely made it more difficult to move the ball on offense.”
Despite the loss, having so much production coming on both sides of the ball by first-years is positive for the Owls, who are a youthful team under second-year head coach Ian Good, who graduated from Kalamazoo in 2014. “[The] freshman defensive backs played really well,” said Melian. Kenyon will head to Springfield, Ohio, next week to take on its first NCAC opponent of the year, Wittenberg University (1-0), at 6 p.m.. The Owls will look for the first win of the campaign on the road against an opponent they have not beaten in over a decade. On the bright side for the Owls, they scored 28 points against the Tigers last season, the most in that span of losses. “We have to come out and practice with urgency this week and prepare well for this week’s game against Wittenberg,” Livingston said. “They are a talented and physical team but we can definitely have success against them.”