St. Louis, Mo., Oct. 24, 2015 – The Washington University in St. Louis football team scored on its first seven possessions as the Bears posted a 70-32 victory over Millsaps College Saturday afternoon at Francis Field in St. Louis.
The 70 points scored was a Southern Athletic Association (SAA) record, and the third most points in school history.
WashU improved to 5-2, 4-2 in the SAA with the win, while Millsaps lost its sixth-straight game and dropped to 1-6, 0-5 in the SAA. The Bears moved into a tie for third place in the SAA standings, two games behind first-place Berry University with two conference games remaining.
"We played well. We knew they had some weapons, and we did a good job of corralling them," said WashU head football coach Larry Kindbom. "Offensively, we had a good plan of attack. J.J. (Tomlin) was on target, our receivers made nice catches and our backs ran well. We are excited about our football team right now."
WashU improved to 4-0 at home this season, and has won its last eight games at Francis Field dating back to 2014. The Bears are averaging 48.5 points and 534.5 yards of total offense per game this season at home.
Junior quarterback J.J. Tomlin finished the day 24-of-34 for 272 yards and tied a career-high with four touchdowns. Tomlin went over 4,000 yards for his career and ranks third in school history with 4,110 yards. He also moved into second place in school history in total offense (4,127).
Junior wide receiver Kevin Hammarlund had seven catches for 106 yards and three touchdowns, and moved into a tie for eighth place in school history with 112 career catches.
Senior running back Cody Ratermann led the ground attack with 86 yards rushing on 15 carries. The Bears ran for a season-high 187 yards on 41 carries (4.6 average) in the win. WashU had a 521-463 advantage in total offense, its fourth-straight game at home producing over 500 yards of offense.
Each team scored on its first possession, with WashU leading 7-6 with 7:49 left in the first quarter after a six-yard TD run by Tomlin.
On the ensuing possession, WashU's defense stopped Millsaps and forced a punt. Senior defensive lineman Ross Chukerman recovered a fumble in the end zone after a bad snap over Millsaps punter Ryan Grace on fourth down to push the advantage to 14-6.
WashU forced another punt on defense, which resulted in a second bad snap over Grace that was recovered at the nine-yard line. Two plays later, Tomlin connected with junior wide receiver Hand Childs for a nine-yard TD to push the lead to 21-6.
The Bears added a pair of touchdowns to push the lead to 35-14. Junior running back Austin Smestad scored from one-yard out, and then Tomlin split two defenders with a 23-yard TD pass to senior tight end Max Elliott.
Senior defensive back Dylan Petre's interception led to the Bears' sixth TD of the half, a seven-yard strike to Hammarlund, to make it 42-14. Tomlin threw his fourth TD of the half, a four-yard pass to Hammarlund, to extend the lead to 49-14 at half.
Tomlin marched the Bears 60 yards on 11 plays, and Smestad scored from three yards out to push the lead to 56-14. Junior quarterback Matt Page tossed a pair of touchdowns in the second half to round out the scoring – a 33 yarder to Hammarlund and a 21-yarder to senior wide receiver Matt McCareins.
Senior kicker Alex Hallwachs set a school record going 9-for-9 in extra points, and recorded his 200th career point.
Senior defensive back Quincy Marting led the defensive unit with eight solo tackles, while junior defensive lineman Josiah Situmeang added four tackles, two tackles for loss and a sack. WashU limited Millsaps to 120 yards rushing on 50 carries (2.4 average).
WashU opens a two-game road trip at Case Western Reserve University (5-1, 5-0 PAC) on Saturday, Oct. 31. Kickoff is set for Noon (ET) in Cleveland, Ohio.
BEAR NOTEBOOK: Millsaps leads the all-time series with WashU 8-1, and the teams met for the first time since 1987 … The Bears have won 14 of its last 15 home games … WashU is 5-2 for the first time since 2013 … 2015 national champions Lucy Cheadle (Track) and Reed Dalton (Swimming) here honored at halftime … The Bears were 12-of-14 on third down.