HAMPDEN-SYDNEY—Junior running back Kaleb Smith, a former Franklin County prep quarterback, rushed for three touchdowns Friday night to lead Hampden-Sydney College to a 49-21 Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) football victory over Ferrum College in the league’s third-place game at Lewis C. Everett Stadium.
Smith scored consecutive TDs in the first and second quarters on runs of 1, 3 and 20 yards.
The Tigers (4-1, 4-1 ODAC) scored the game’s first 35 points.
The Panthers (2-3, 2-3 ODAC) scored their first points at 9:45 of the third period and they found the end zone twice in the final frame at 14:33 and 2:59.
Hampden-Sydney’s win is its third in a six-game series and it breaks a three-game losing streak in the set.
The Tigers scored five of their seven TDs via the rush.
Smith, a winner over Ferrum for the first time in three games played, gained 82 yards on 14 carries for a average of 5.9-yards-per-carry. His 20-yard scoring dash with 1:34 left in the second stanza was his best rush of the contest.
Ferrum committed four turnovers: three fumbles and one interception.
The loss ends Cleive Adams’ first year as Ferrum’s head coach.
The 49 points surrendered by the Panthers is the most this season.
Those 49 points are a season-best scoring output by the Tigers, surpassing the 43 they scored in a conference triumph over Guilford (N.C.) College.
Cole Becker scored the Tigers’ first TD one minute into the game, then Smith tallied his trio of TDs and Blake Page caught a 33-yard pass from quarterback Tanner Bernard at 14:01 of the third period to finish a 35-point surge.
Hampden-Sydney scored its first 35 points on 35 plays from scrimmage covering 254 yards and 13:15 of elapsed time.
Its final two TDs were produced on 19 plays covering 133 yards and 10:35 of elapsed time.
The Panthers stopped the Tigers’ shut-out bid when Joey Lama found the end zone from a yard to complete an 11-play, 68-yard march.
The Tigers responded when Page caught a 20-yard pass from Bernard with 42 seconds left in the third period.
Justin Pollard finished the Tigers’ scoring with 6:05 remaining with a six-yard TD sprint.
Ferrum receiver Tmahdae Penn caught TD passes from Titus Jones in the final frame from 44 and 9 yards.
Jones completed 18 of 24 passes for 205 yards, two TDs and one interception.
Reserve signal caller Zeb Dyer was 6 of 7 for 57 yards.
Ten receivers caught passes for the Panthers.
Bernard completed 14 of 22 passes for 211 yards, two TDs and one interception.
Reserve Nick Kallivokas was 0 of 1.
Seven receivers caught passes for the Tigers. Page made four receptions for 121 yards, a 30.3-yards-per-catch average.
Becker carried 18 times for 108 yards.
Eight ball carriers accounted for Hampden-Sydney’s 227 rushing yards.
Ten ball carriers produced Ferrum’s 83 rushing yards.
Hampden-Sydney finished the game with 23 first downs to Ferrum’s 20.
Ferrum converted 54% (7 of 13) of its third-down plays; Hampden-Sydney converted 71% (5 of 7) of its fourth-down attempts.
Brandon Scott for Ferrum and Jordan Fields for Hampden-Sydney each interception a pass.
Stephen Cash led the Tigers’ defense with nine tackles.
Billy Higgins paced the Panthers’ defense with 20 tackles—nine solo and 11 assisted.
Former FCHS standout Will Hairston, a Ferrum freshman, had four tackles: three solo, one assist.
Former FCHS performer Jacob Bayer, a Hampden-Sydney sophomore, was credited with an assisted tackle.
Hampden-Sydney ran 78 plays from scrimmage to Ferrum’s 65 and held a 37:52 to 22:08 advantage in time of possession.
In other championship weekend results, Randolph-Macon College captured the league championship with a 13-10 overtime victory over Emory and Henry College and Bridgewater College topped Shenandoah University 22-14 in the fifth-place game.
Guilford (N.C.) College and Southern Virginia University decided not to compete during championship weekend and Washington and Lee University did not play stage a spring football campaign.
Southern Virginia does have a non-conference game against North Carolina Wesleyan College scheduled for Friday in Buena Vista.
Randolph-Macon’s championship is its third since 2016 and its 12th overall.
The ODAC has been competing in intercollegiate football since its berth in 1976 and seven schools have won the conference championship: Randolph-Macon (12), Emory & Henry (11), Hampden-Sydney (9), Washington and Lee (7), Bridgewater (7), Guilford (2) and former member Catholic (D.C.) University (1).