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Marietta College football drops hard fought battle with Mount Union

ALLIANCE — Marietta gave a stellar effort against Division III football powerhouse Mount Union Friday, but ultimately fell 20-3.

Defense ruled the day as the Purple Raiders (3-0) held the Pioneers (1-2) to 116 total yards.

Mount quarterback Braxton Plunk went 27-for-47 for 327 yards and three touchdowns, one each to Ulice Gillard, Jaden Manley, and Wayne Ruby, Jr. Ruby finished with nine catches for 129 yards and Josh Petruccelli ran for 74 yards on 21 carries.

Mount Union went 10 plays on its first drive but turned the ball over on downs at the Marietta 33. The Pioneers then engineered a 14-play, 48-yard drive and Logan Alward kicked a 38-yard field goal and Marietta led 3-0. The Raiders came back covering 84 yards in seven plays and Plunk hit Manley on a 16-yard touchdown pass, the extra point was no good and Mount Union led 6-3 after the first quarter.

Both teams traded possessions then Detellem tackled Marietta quarterback Ethan Brown in the end zone for a safety and the Raiders took an 8-3 lead. Each team came up empty on two more possessions before halftime.

The only score in the third quarter was a Plunk touchdown pass to Gillard for 19 yards and the Raiders led 14-3 after three quarters.

McMillen had an interception on the Pioneers first drive of the fourth quarter and on the very next play Plunk hit Ruby on a 47-yard touchdown pass to put Mount Union up 20-3.

Brown was 12 for 21 for 69 yards passing for Marietta. Bryce Agnew led the Pioneer rushing attack with 66 yards on 20 carries.

On defense, Drake Neuberger had two more sacks for Marietta to up his season total to six.

Marietta will look to snap a two-game skid next Friday when it welcomes rival Muskingum to Don Drumm Stadium for a 7 p.m. kickoff.

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