TERRE HAUTE, Ind. -- The Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology football team scored on its first five possessions and relied on a strong defensive effort to knock off previously undefeated Mount St. Joseph 29-8 on a rainy and windy Saturday afternoon at Cook Stadium.
Noah Thomas hauled in eight receptions for 127 yards and had a team-high 193 all-purpose yards to lead the Fightin' Engineer offense. Garrett Wight crossed the 100-yard rushing mark for the third straight week and the fourth time in five games with 113 yards and one score.
Andrew Dion finished 13-23 through the air for 210 yards and two touchdowns to help balance the offensive attack. Jake Zimmerman added two receptions for 65 yards, including a 48-yard catch to set up a second quarter score.
The Rose-Hulman defense held one of the nation's most prolific offenses to just one touchdown in the performance. Mount St. Joseph was averaged 44.8 points per game and allowing 15.8 with a perfect 6-0 record heading into the game, but the Fightin' Engineer defense held the Lions to just 212 total yards, forced two turnovers and amassed six sacks on the day.
Michael Stevens led the defense with 10 tackles, one sack and one interception. Alex Perez added nine stops and Andrew Hesse had eight tackles. Zach Phillips and Chaikou Sow added six tackles each, with Phillips grabbing one interception. Tyce Miller added three pass breakups and Corey Vincent had two sacks to add to the strong performance.
Rose-Hulman took the wind in the first quarter and built a quick 16-0 lead. Dion connected with Thomas on a 47-yard touchdown to complete a three-play, 70-yard drive in just 50 seconds on Rose-Hulman's first possession. The lead reached 13-0 on a 17-yard scoring strike from Dion to Zimmerman on the second possession.
Rose-Hulman added three more points in the first quarter on a 25-yard field goal by Brett Tuttle. Mount St. Joseph answered with an eight-point touchdown, with Chaiten Tomlin and Cornell Beacham hooking up for both a touchdown pass and a two-point conversion with 12:46 left in the first half.
The Fightin' Engineers scored touchdowns on their next two possessions to take a 29-8 lead into the half. Wight scored from four yards out, and Dion had a 24-yard scoring run to give the Rose-Hulman a 21-point halftime lead.
The wind picked up in the second half, as did the Rose-Hulman defense as neither team scored in the final 30 minutes. Rose-Hulman held the Lions to just 31 yards in their three fourth quarter possessions with the wind to secure the victory.
Rose-Hulman improved to 5-2 overall and 4-1 in HCAC play with the win, while Mount St. Joseph dropped to 6-1 and 4-1 in league games. The Fightin' Engineers control their own destiny for a conference co-championship and NCAA Division III playoff bid, needing wins in their next two home games against Defiance and Hanover to secure the league title.