Hawkins' school-record six TD passes lifts BVU to 42-7 homecoming win over Cornell College
Senior quarterback Chris Hawkins set a new Buena Vista single-game record and tied the Iowa Conference record with six touchdown passes, as the Beavers finished with 381 yards of total offense, en route to their league victory of the season, a 42-7 Homecoming win over Cornell College (2-3 0-3 IIAC) on Saturday afternoon.
"We were kind of waiting for everything to come together," Beavers coach Jay Anderson said. "We just executed well on all three phases. It's just one game - you can't get too high or too low.
"But we should be more confident coming out of Saturday's game."
Hawkins was named the Iowa Conference's male athlete of the week for his accomplishment. The Platte City, Mo., native is the first Beaver in any sport to receive league recognition this season. His six touchdown passes set a new BVU single-game record, breaking the previous mark of four which was last reached by Eric Wiebers in 2003 versus Gustavus Adolphus. It also tied the IIAC single-game mark which was last reached by Coe's Andy TeKippe vs. Cornell back in 2005.
Hawkins, who threw three of his touchdown passes in the contest to senior Randy Kaufmann, has now thrown for nine touchdowns this season and 37 in his career. He's 484 yards away from owning the school's career passing yards mark.
The Rams marched 59 yards on nine plays on the game's first possession, but came up one yard short on 4th-and-10 from the BVU 29 yard-line. Buena Vista then took over on downs at its own 20. From there, the Beavers marched 80 yards on nine plays, capped off by a 19-yard touchdown pass from Hawkins to Kaufmann. Jamie Daum added the PAT and BVU led 7-0 midway through the opening quarter.
After a three-and-out by Cornell, BVU began its second drive at the Rams' 33, and went five plays for its second score, a 13-yard touchdown completion from Hawkins to Steven Maguire on 3rd-and-12. Daum's PAT gave the Beavers the 14-0 advantage.
Just before the end of the first quarter, Hawkins threw his third touchdown pass of the game, finding Trent Svendsen for a 20-yard strike, and Daum's PAT gave Buena Vista a three touchdown lead heading into the second 15 minutes of play.
Kaufmann, who finished with a season-high 119 yards receiving, caught his second touchdown pass of the day just under six minutes into the second quarter, when Hawkins found him from five yards out, capping a 12-play 42-yard drive, that took 5:07 off of the clock. Daum connected on his fourth PAT of the day, giving BVU a 28-0 cushion at the half.
Rahn Franklin, Jr. picked up his second interception in as many games with just more than four minutes remaining in the third quarter - setting up the next Buena Vista score. After Franklin's 14-yard return, the Beavers took over at the Cornell 46. Three plays later, Hawkins, who was under pressure, stepped up into the pocket and fired a perfect strike down the middle of the field to Devin Stewart, who pulled away from a pair of Ram defenders after the catch, en route to his second touchdown catch of the season, and the record-breaking TD pass from Hawkins. Daum's PAT extended the BVU lead to 35-0 with 2:56 left in the third.
Following a three-and-out by Cornell on the ensuing possession, BVU took over at its own 34 yard-line. Five plays later, it was Hawkins to Kaufmann for the third time, this time from 56 yards out, giving the Beavers a 42-0 lead.
The Rams were forced to punt on the next drive, but held BVU on a fourth-and-one play, to get the ball back with 10:52 left in the contest. Cornell then went 10 plays and 58 yards for its first points of the afternnon, capped off by a Mike Thompson two-yard run. Adam Culberson added the PAT, cutting the Beaver lead to 42-7, and wrapping up the scoring in the contest.
Hawkins finished the day completing 18-of-27 pass attempts for a season-high 285 yards, while throwing no interceptions for the second straight week. The Beavers, who rushed for more than 100 yards as a team for the first time this season, were led on the ground by Cory Donscheski with 45 yards on 14 carries, while Alex Moss was right behind with 41 yards on 16 attempts.
Kaufmann hauled in a game-high six catches, as Svendsen chipped in with five grabs for 79 yards.
Todd Schwartz, Cody Pierce, and Mike Sly recorded six tackles apiece to lead BVU. Nick Sommerlot picked up the lone sack by the Beaver defense.
Cornell chalked up just 208 yards of total offense, with 115 coming on the ground. Anthony Kobler completed just 7-of-18 passes for 77 yards as back-up quarterback Dallas Bush came in and completed 1-of-5 attempts for 16 yards.
Travion Hardman rushed 19 times for a game-high 48 yards, as Thompson followed with 26 yards on nine attempts. Thompson and Josh Youngblood each finished with two catches for 25 yards.
Chris Gustafson turned in a stellar defensive performance in the loss, recording a game-high 18 tackles, including 5.5 for a loss.
The Beavers had just one turnover, dropped no passes and were 10 of 16 on third-down conversions.
Anderson said he's known all along his team was capable of playing like this. It was just a matter of getting everyone on the same page.
"Offensively this was our best execution, and defensively we played great against the run," he said. "Our offensive line continues to improve. We just need to take this and keep working to get better."
Buena Vista (2-3, 1-3 IIAC) goes to Luther at 1 p.m. Saturday.
In the Norsemen, the Beavers will see an unorthodox defense that will have just one man with his hands on the ground at times.
"They're very aggressive defensively," Anderson said. "They have probably the best running back in the league. Last year they were more pass-first; this year they're more of a power run team."