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R-MC Football Earns First NCAA Tourney Win in 23-20 Victory at JCU

Tre Frederick running the football

UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, Ohio - Senior Tre Frederick (Angier, N.C./West Johnston) rushed for 101 yards and the Randolph-Macon football team held the ball for more than 44 minutes as the Yellow Jackets registered their first NCAA Tournament victory in a 23-20 win at No. 8 John Carroll Saturday afternoon in the first round of the NCAA Championship at Don Shula Stadium.

The Basics

Score: Randolph-Macon 23, #8 John Carroll 2-

Location/Venue: University Heights, Ohio/Don Shula Stadium

Records: R-MC 9-2, JCU 9-2

How It Happened

  • The Yellow Jackets held the advantage in field position in the first quarter, but the period ended in a scoreless deadlock. Sophomore Chris Vidal (Wake, N.C./Wake Forest) missed a 31-yard field goal early in the second quarter, keeping the contest scoreless.
  • The Blue Streaks had a 48-yard touchdown run, but missed the extra point, as JCU took a 6-0 lead with 12:10 left in the second period.
  • After a 27-yard kickoff return by Frederick, R-MC drove to the JCU 16. Vidal hit a 33-yard field goal, making it 6-3 with 8:53 left in the second quarter.
  • Following a pair of punts, the Blue Streaks took over on their 12 with 2:29 remaining in the first half. Sophomore Matt Vergara (Chesterfield, Va./Benedictine) returned an interception 14 yards for a touchdown, giving the Yellow Jackets a 10-6 advantage at halftime. R-MC held the ball for 20:24 in the first half. The Yellow Jacket defense held JCU to 135 yards of total offense on 27 plays.
  • Midway through the third quarter, R-MC took over on its own 46. Junior Burke Estes (Wilmington, N.C./New Hanover) hit Frederick on a 27-yard pass on a 3rd-&-11 play to keep the drive alive. Estes later connected with senior Owen Ritter (York, Pa./Dallastown) on an 11-yard touchdown pass to give R-MC a 16-6 lead with 3:26 left in the third period.
  • JCU blocked a punt and returned it for a touchdown, pulling within three at 16-13 with 3:51 left in the fourth quarter.
  • Senior Harrison Smith (Wilmington, N.C./Hoggard) recovered the ensuing onside kick, but the Yellow Jackets were unable to pick up a first down. Senior Julian Drew (Raleigh, N.C./Wakefield) punted and pinned the Blue Streaks inside their 10 yard line at the 9.
  • Four straight incompletions gave R-MC the ball on the JCU 9 with 1:41 remaining. Senior Eric Hoy (Clayton, N.C./Clayton) scored on 3rd-and-2 from the 2 as the Yellow Jackets pushed the lead to 23-13 with 1:23 left.
  • JCU would score on its next possession, making it 23-20 with 20.9 seconds left. Senior Sean McDonald (Clarke County, Va./Clarke County) recovered the onside kick and Estes took a knee to cement the Yellow Jacket victory.

By The Numbers

  • R-MC dominated time of possession for the second straight game. The Yellow Jackets kept the ball for 44:05 at JCU after having it for 43:56 at H-SC.
  • Frederick was just the second player to rush for 100 yards against the Blue Streaks this season.
  • Estes completed 15 of 24 passes for 141 and one TD.
  • Frederick had three receptions for 81 yards.


  • R-MC won its first NCAA Championship game in program history The Yellow Jackets won their first postseason game since 1969, when they defeated Bridgeport 47-28 in the Knute Rockne Bowl.
  • R-MC became the first ODAC team to win an NCAA Tournament game since 2013.

Up Next

  • Randolph-Macon will face Muhlenberg in the second round of the NCAA Championship on Saturday, Nov. 24 at 12 noon as a site to be determined. The Mules won at Delaware Valley 20-13 in an NCAA first-round contest.