The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

View from the trenches: Homecoming and senior day

Homecoming is an exciting event that occurs every fall.

A Saturday where alumni return to Guilford College to reminisce on their experience, tailgate and watch a Quaker football game.

Senior day also coincides with Homecoming. Not only were we playing for our returning alumni, we were also playing for the guys who had put in four years of hard work to get the program where it is today.

On this brisk November day, we were playing the Catholic University of America.

Things did not start out according to our game plan.

We were down 14–0 early, and we were staring adversity right in the face.

We knew we had to get things fixed quickly if we wanted to be able to achieve victory for our alumni and our seniors.

After our ruthless defense made crucial stops inside our own red zone (including a blocked field goal) the offense found its groove.

We rallied and found ourselves entering halftime even with our adversaries 14–14.

After halftime Catholic immediately took a 21–14 lead, and we again needed to step up in order to come out of this game victorious.

As we have done all season, we took this challenge in stride.

We tied the score at 21–21 on a 25-yard screen pass to junior running back Josh Schow, who would not be denied the end zone. We closed out the 3rd quarter on another Schow touchdown to take a 28–21 lead.

The 4th quarter was all ours after a beautiful pass from junior Matt Pawlowski to junior receiver Adam Smith for a 78-yard touchdown that put us up 35–21.

Then, to put the final nail into the coffin, the offense chewed up five minutes of clock and scored on a 9-yard Pawlowski touchdown to wide receiver junior Austen Thompson to secure a 42–21 victory.

We were ecstatic to get this victory on Homecoming and on senior day, but we now had foe Hampden-Sydney College on deck.

We had an excellent week of preparation for the Tigers and our confidence was riding high going into the biggest game of the season.

Entering the 4th quarter, Hampden-Sydney was up 21–10.  We knew in order to get back into contention we had to make a big play.

On cue, Pawlowski hit wide receiver Smith in stride for a 67-yard touchdown. Following senior running back Josh Williams’ two-point conversion reception, we narrowed the margin to 21–18.

The Tigers answered with a touchdown. Then, following a Tyler Hunt field goal, we found ourselves down 28–21.

In order to get back in the game, our ferocious defense had to make a stop and get the ball back into our hands.

And just as they had done in previous games, they stepped up and got the ball back into the offense’s grasp with a little under two minutes to play.

We moved quickly down the field, slashing the opposing defense with everything in our playbook.

Suddenly, we found ourselves on their 18-yard line.

The ball was snapped, the offensive line picked up all of the Tigers’ pressure and Pawlowski put the ball on a frozen rope into the hands of Thompson for a touchdown.

It is an image we will never forget.

After the PAT, the game was tied at 28 and headed to overtime.

In the end, we lost in overtime 35–28.

But you know what? We held our heads high knowing that we gave every part of ourselves in a valiant effort to represent our school.

It was a game for the ages. Each team member will remember it vividly and tell the story for years to come.

And so we move to our final contest, with our sights on Emory & Henry College to bring back a final victory to our wonderful and supportive classmates.

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About the Contributor
Reese Setzer, Sports Editor

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