ASHLAND, Va. – Senior Marcus Mitchell (Chesapeake, Va./Grassfield) had 10 tackles, including one for an 11-yard loss, and sophomore Eric Hoy (Clayton, N.C./Clayton) had 133 receiving yards and a rushing touchdown as the Randolph-Macon football team defeated Methodist 34-16 Saturday afternoon at Day Field.
The Yellow Jackets (3-0) are off to their best start since 2011, when they won their first four games of the season.
The Monarchs (1-2) drove 65 yards on their first possession of the game, but were stopped on fourth-and-two on the R-MC 7. The Yellow Jackets drove 93 yards in 12 plays, capped by a five-yard TD run by sophomore Tre Frederick (Angier, N.C./West Johnston) to give the home team a 6-0 lead with 4:15 left in the opening period. MU hit a 35-yard field goal late in the first quarter to make it a 6-3 contest.
Early in the second period, Hoy finished a 62-yard drive with a four-yard TD run to give the Yellow Jackets a 13-3 advantage. Following a bad snap on an MU punt, R-MC drove 48 yards to the end zone, as senior Dom Kaopua (Fredericksburg, Va./Chancellor) went in from six yards out to give the Yellow Jackets a 20-3 edge near the midway point of the second quarter. The Monarchs found the end zone with 31 seconds left in the half to trail 20-10 at intermission.
The defenses took over in the third quarter, as neither team was able to score. Sophomore tight end Sean McDonald (Boyce, Va./Clarke County) caught a seven-yard scoring pass from sophomore Joseph Vairo (Coral Springs, Fla./Westminster Academy) midway through the final period to extend the lead to 27-10. Kaopua found the end zone again, this time from the one-yard line as the Yellow Jackets pushed the lead to 34-10 with just over two minutes remaining. MU added a late touchdown to make the final 34-16.
R-MC had 483 yards of total offense, with 231 on the ground and 252 through the air. The Yellow Jackets have had at least 475 yards of total offense in each of their three games this season.
The Yellow Jackets had an advantage of 33:28 to 26:32 in time of possession. R-MC has won the battle for time of possession in each of its first three games this season.
Frederick carried the ball 27 times for 131 yards and one score. Kaopua added 48 yards on the ground with two TDs and Vairo had 42 rushing yards.
Vairo completed 15 of 24 passes for 252 yards. Hoy was his favorite target, with six receptions for 133 yards.
Defensively, senior Logan O'Neill (Lorton, Va./South County) recorded eight tackles for the Yellow Jackets. Junior Jake Pinkston (Alexandria, Va./Robinson) added seven stops, including two tackles for loss and one quarterback sack.
Randolph-Macon has concluded its non-conference schedule. Following their bye week, the Yellow Jackets will open ODAC play on Thursday, Sept. 29 at 6:30 p.m. at Shenandoah.