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Jackson Gillock picks off his first of three inter­cep­tions of the day
Anthony Lupi | Collegian

The Hillsdale College Chargers football team dom­i­nated the Walsh Uni­versity Cav­a­liers, beating them 20 – 3 after gen­er­ating five total turnovers. 

The Chargers defense put together a remarkable per­for­mance, led by red­shirt freshman defensive back Jackson Gillock, who caught three of the Chargers four inter­cep­tions. Gillock now leads all of NCAA Division II football, with five inter­cep­tions on the season. 

On special teams, junior line­backer Nick Goerss was awarded G‑MAC Special Teams Player of the Week after a blocked punt in the third quarter. 

Red­shirt freshman tailback Logan VanEnkenvort, who led the Chargers back­field with 51 rushing yards, com­mented on the effect these turnovers have on the offense’s performance. 

“Those turnovers are just huge momentum boosts,” VanEnkenvort said. “As soon as you get that turnover the offense just wants to go fire down the field again.”

On their first pos­session of the game, Walsh drove 74 yards, but settled for a field goal, the team’s only points of the game. 

Both Gillock and senior defensive back Joe Schnieder would grab inter­cep­tions in the second quarter. Gillock’s inter­ception would set up the Charger offense for their only scoring drive of the half. 

With 48 seconds left in the second quarter, sophomore quar­terback Garrit Aissen, who fin­ished the game with 93 yards passing, threw a two-yard touchdown pass to true freshman tight end Evan Schafer, leaving the score 7 – 3, with the Chargers up at the half. 

When asked about the per­for­mance of Aissen, who entered the season as the third-string quar­terback, VanEnkenvort spoke highly of his teammate. 

“I think he’s really stepped up to the plate,” VanEnkenvort said. “He’s done a good job, and I think he can con­tinue to do the job. He’s really put the team on his shoulders, trying to turn what seemed like a really bad sit­u­ation into some­thing good.”

Walsh’s first punt of the second half was blocked by Goerss, and returned 8 yards by red­shirt freshman defensive back Bart Bixler for a Charger touchdown, making the score 13 – 3 after a missed extra point by senior punter Jack Shannon. 

After a fourth quarter inter­ception by Gillock, Aissen led the Chargers on an 80-yard drive, cul­mi­nating in a 1‑yard rush by the sophomore quar­terback to make the final score 20 – 3. 

The fol­lowing drive, junior defensive lineman Max Torbert forced a fumble which was recovered by senior defensive tackle Nate Chambers, and on the final play of the game, Gillock caught his third inter­ception of the day, netting the Chargers five total turnovers. 

“It starts with the D‑line,” Gillock said. “The D‑line is killing it and so are the line­backers. They’re just rushing the quar­terback and making him make bad throws, and then that’s where the DB’s come in.”

Next Sat­urday, October 16, the Chargers will host the Lake Erie College Storm, who are coming off of a three game losing streak. Coach Otterbein said the team has been improving the last three weeks. 

“We’re learning what it takes to prepare,” Otterbein said. “We’re getting the job done on Sat­urday, we’re making enough plays to win football games. We’ve come out on top, and that gets you absolutely nothing going into this week. We’re 0 – 0 going into this week, we want to go unde­feated this week, and that’s the focus.”